Naftogaz once again failed to obtain a delay of payments: what it means, and where the danger for Ukraine is

August 18, 2022

Given the Ukrainian government’s task of getting ready for the heating season, the situation with Naftogaz looks especially unpleasant and alarming

Naftogaz of Ukraine NJSC announced that bondholders had again rejected the company's proposal to postpone the repayment of its debt (due to the Russian invasion) for two years. This was reported by Reuters. What does this decision say? How can the events develop further? "Comments" put these questions before experts.

"My first suggestion is that Naftogaz did not communicate professionally enough with Dechert legal advisors, representing the interests of the national company's securities owners. In such a scenario, the negotiations strategy needs to be immediately revised and a reasoned position strengthened, but, of course, with the permission of the Ukrainian government," the expert notes. "The second one is that there may be other reasons, either with Naftogaz officials or with Dechert legal advisors. This is the worst possible scenario, because the national company in fact loses a significant financial resource. Naftogaz will have to draw financial assistance and use additional credit facilities to buy gas and implement other items of its production programmes".

According to Maksym Bielawski, there is a way out of this unpleasant situation.

"First of all," he elaborates, "it is necessary to convince the investors’ representative of force majeure and to inform him about the real state of affairs in the national company, taking into account the task of the Ukrainian government to get ready for the heating season. The negotiation strategy should also include a proposal to issue financial guarantees from the US Federal Reserve System to the amount of financial obligations to investors claimed by the US-based Dechert company".


Maksym Bielawski

Leading Expert, Energy Programmes

Born in 1986 in Zhytomyr oblast


Zhytomyr State Technological University (2008)

Ph.D in Technical Science (2010)

Ivano-Frankivsk National Technical University of Oil and Gas (2012)

Author of 17 patents and 100 scientific works

Work Experience:

2008 – 2011 — Operator of Gas Infrastructure Units, Controller of Gas Transmission System in Rivne Division of PJSC "Ukrtransgas"

2011 – 2017 — Leading Engineer, Deputy Head of Press-Service, Head of Public Relation Department of PJSC "Ukrtransgas"

2017 – 2018 — HR Director of PJSC "Maine Gas Pipelines of Ukraine", Advisor to the Minister of Energy and Coal Industry of Ukraine

2021 — Director of Integrated Communications of NJSC "Naftogaz of Ukraine"