Related News

Home » World

Russia and Ukraine pen gas transportation deal

RUSSIA and Ukraine signed a deal yesterday that restores natural gas shipments to Ukraine and paves the way for an end to the nearly two-week cutoff of most Russian gas to a freezing Europe.

The agreement was signed by the heads of Russia's state-run natural gas monopoly Gazprom and Ukraine's gas company Naftogaz. The signing was witnessed by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian counterpart Yulia Tymoshenko.

Putin said Gazprom had received orders to resume shipments bound for Europe, which had been cut since January 7 as Moscow and Kiev argued over 2009 gas prices and allegations that Ukraine was stealing gas destined for Europe.

Ukraine disputed this, claiming that Russia was not sending enough "technical gas" to push the rest further west.

Officials say the restored gas shipments could take up to 36 hours to cross Ukraine and reach European customers.

Europe gets about 20 percent of its gas from Russia via Ukraine, and the cutoff hit some countries hard, such as Bulgaria and Slovakia, that rely almost entirely on Russia for gas.

Tymoshenko and Putin negotiated a preliminary deal for Ukraine to get gas with a 20-percent discount from this year's average European price, which Russia says is US$450 per 1,000 cubic meters. That would be double the price Ukraine paid in 2008.

Ukrainian Parliament Speaker Volodymyr Lytvyn said yesterday the average price Ukraine will pay this year will be around US$240 to US$250.

Russia won a key principle, however, that Ukraine must pay more for its energy supplies. Russia also won't have to pay higher transit prices to Ukraine to use its pipelines.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend