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Turkey goes to international arbitration over Russian gas price: official


* Contract arbitration reaches Turkey
* Meetings with Russian officials ongoing

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Turkish state gas importer Botas has applied to the international court of arbitration to resolve a dispute with Gazprom over the price Botas pays for the Russian gas it imports, a Turkish energy ministry official told Tuesday.

The official confirmed that meetings with Russian officials are continuing but gave no further details of the dispute, ongoing negotiations or the arbitration case.

Gazprom earlier this year agreed to give Botas a discount of 10.25% on the price it pays for the 20 Bcm/year of gas it imports under two separate contracts.

Turkish officials confirmed at the time that the discount had been granted independently of any final agreement with Russia over its plans to route its 63 Bcm/year Turk Stream gas export line through Turkey.

However, subsequently they announced that Gazprom was refusing to implement the discount unless Turkey approved the construction of Turk Stream, which would have to be granted by the Turkish parliament.

Turkey has been in political limbo since June when the governing Justice and Development Party lost its majority in parliament, making it impossible for parliament to vote on approval of Turk Stream.

--David O'Byrne,
--Edited by James Leech,