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Return of KazTransGas-Tbilisi to the Kazakh Side may be Postponed Again

A return of the Tbilisi gas distribution company KazTransGas-Tbilisi under the control of the Kazakh side can again be postponed. Georgian Deputy Energy Minister Mariam Valishvili told  Trend News.

“The term of office of the Georgian commission managing the  company, expires on  1 April. But, most likely, the period will be extended, the question of extending the powers will be discussed,” she said.

According to her, the transfer of control over KazTransGas-Tbilisi to the Kazakh side will be possible only when the parties conclude an agreement on the payment of the existing debt of the company to the Ministry of Finance of Georgia.

In Valishvili’s words, negotiations on this issue are ongoing and bilateral meetings were held in 2015 between representatives of the Ministry of Finance of Georgia and the Kazakh side.

However, the agreement still has not been signed, the deputy minister noted.

“It is unlikely that it will be able to solve  this issue before April,” – she said.

The Kazakh state company KazTransGas acquired Tbilisi gas distribution company Tbilgas for  USD 12. 5 million  in 2006.

By 2009, the company has accumulated a debt of 80 million GEL. Some 68 million of this amount amounted to Georgian Oil and Gas Corporation.

In order to deal with the debts, in 2009 the corporation appointed a special manager.

After the change of power, the Kazakh side hoped to return to the management of the company, but almost two years have passed, and the government of Georgia states that KazTransGas has not paid the debt, that’s why the company is still under state control.

Negotiations over  the company’s  return under Kazakh management started after the change of power in 2012, it was announced several times on their successful completion, but despite this, KazTransGas has not been returned to the Kazakh side.