Russia Not Currently Negotiating $3 Billion Debt With Ukraine, Says Moscow

Image by The Presidential Press and Information Office

Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said on Thursday on the air with Rossiya 1 TV Channel that Russia is not currently negotiating with Ukraine over a $3 billion sovereign bond issued under the former Ukrainian Yanykovych regime, reported Russian state news agency TASS. The dispute is currently in the U.K. courts. Russia has so far won the legal side of the battle as the security was issued in the U.K and has jurisdiction.

“Legal proceedings will most probably continue. We are ready to consider any proposals if we find and negotiate a proposal on early sale of this debt or its exchange for other securities,” the minister said.

“No negotiations are held with Ukraine for the time being,” reported TASS.

Opinion: London Will Not Resist Russia Over Ukraine

When former President Yanukovych refused to sign a trade agreement with the E.U. earlier in the decade, Russia stepped in to pull Ukraine towards Moscow with a $3 billion loan in the form of a eurobond, meaning a sovereign bond issued in another currency and country than the borrowing nation. Ukraine defaulted on the debt in 2015 after the Maidan revolution which saw Yanukovych ousted, the Russian annexation of Crimea, and the initiation of the conflict in Donbass.

Ukraine Tenders Eurobonds, Plans To Re-Enter Capital Markets This Month

On May 29, 2017, London’s High Court rejected all of the objections by Ukraine under Russia’s lawsuit. The court thus upheld Russia’s position on the case’s expedited hearing. On June 23, Ukraine’s finance ministry filed an appeal to the London Court in the Eurobond case of $3 bln debt to Russia. The appeal hearing is scheduled to January 2018, writes TASS.

Ukraine has refused to pay the debt, declaring Russia invaded and occupied its sovereign territory.

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