He conducted the meeting with Ukrainian speaker, Vladimir Litvin, at the St. Petersburg Economic Forum.
"The latest developments concerning the eternal problem of relations between Gazprom and Ukraine are alarming," Putin said. "In the previous years we eliminated the problems that stood between us - about one billion dollars of debts had been rescheduled, and the Russian bank agreed to shoulder the risks. Now another problem has emerged, and it is worth one billion dollars again," he said.
"I expect Ukrainian leadership and parliament to do their best to resolve the issue," Putin said. "At a certain point we did a great deal to eliminate the image of Ukraine as an unreliable partner. It would be very unpleasant to start from scratch again."
"Just recently Gazprom's delegates have come back from Ukraine. Judging by the documents, there is 7.7 billion cubic meters of gas. In reality there is none," Putin said. “In terms of European prices - 160 dollars per 1,000 cubic meters - that is over 1.3 billion dollars. Naturally, we shall not say we want to have the money tomorrow, but specialists will have to resolve the problem sooner or later. All that should not be allowed to overshadow inter-state relations."
However, President Vladimir Putin is satisfied with the standard of the political dialogue between Russia and Ukraine over the past months, Interfax reported.
"We highly appreciate and see the policy that the Ukrainian leadership has been pursuing with regard to Russia. The dynamics remains positive," he said at the meeting with Ukrainian parliament speaker Vladimir Litvin.
However, "we are alarmed that the speed of economic growth has been slowing down," Putin said. "While in January-April last year it amounted to 40%, now it stands at 25%. That is also quite well but still there is a slowdown," he said.
"We see that the Ukrainian president and government develop the relationship with Russian business. I hope that the conditions that are created for Russian business will benefit Russia and Ukraine," he said.
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