Interfax reports that the Ministry of Finance intends to increase Mineral Extraction Tax (MET) payments for gas companies by an additional RUB 200bn (USD 6.8bn) in 2013-14. Deputy Minister of Finance Sergey Shatalov said that incremental payments would be collected not only from Gazprom but also from independent producers. No final decision has not been made yet, with discussions ongoing. Today’s Vedomosti also mentions that the Ministry for the Economy now expects gas export parity in Russia to be reached in 2021.
There are two key takeaways from the news. First, the government has increased the target gas MET payments for 2014 from RUB 100bn (USD 3.4bn) to RUB 150bn (USD 5.1bn) while keeping that for 2013F at RUB 50bn (USD 1.7bn). Second, this is the first time that the Ministry has explicitly stated that it expects to receive extra MET payments from the whole industry, rather than just Gazprom.
The story has yet to be finalised, so we expect some further developments in the near future.