Russian Prime Minister To Visit Ukraine

Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov leaves on a working visit for Ukraine and Moldova right after a governmental meeting Thursday, the Russian government staff told RIA Novosti. In Kiev Kasyanov is to meet Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma and Prime Minister Anatoly Kinakh in private at first. Later the negotiations will be joined by members of their delegations. The Russian Prime Minister is to discuss all the range of issues related to the Russian-Ukrainian trade relations, first of all, gas issues, well-informed sources told RIA Novosti. The agreement on restructuring the Ukrainian debt for the supplied gas is to be signed in Kiev. The Russian position on this problem is invariable - the Ukraine is granted the right to pay by instalments within 12 years and debts will be processed in corporation securities. The state should give guarantees to assume the debt in case of disappearance, bankruptcy of a company or unsecured payments. These conditions comply with those imposed by the Paris Club of Creditor Nations to regulate the Ukrainian debt. "Russia having friendly relations with Ukraine is ready to give it 12 years to solve this problem," Kasyanov said recently. Now the coordinated sum of the Ukrainian gas debt totals 1.4 billion rubles. Mikhail Kasyanov and Anatoly Kinakh are to discuss the memorandum on a trade agreement to come into force instead of the old document of 1993. Besides, they will touch upon stationing, navigation and service of the Black Sea Navy. Kasyanov will leave Kiev for a one-day working visit to Moldova on Friday morning, October 5.

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