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Chisinau: Russian gas supplies stopped as of the first of January 2006

The government in Chisinau announced on 2 January that due to the lack of a new contract with Moldova Russia had turned off its gas supplies. "The price of $160 per 1,000 cubic meters asked by Gazprom is not a market price, so Moldova which had been purchasing natural gas at $80, will continue talks with the Russian natural-gas monopoly" – Moldovan President Voronin said. The president added that he hoped Chisinau would be able to negotiate a reduced price because Moldova payed for its gas supplies on time and because Gazprom owned controlling interests in the Russian-Moldovan joint venture Moldovagaz.

The presidential press service also announced that the government was setting up a crisis cell to handle the situation.