KIEV, September 22 (Itar-Tass) —— The reorganization and upgrading of the Ukrainian gas pipeline system should be done on the condition of mandatory participation of Russia in it, the deputy CEO of the oil and gas company Naftogaz Ukrainy, Vadim Chuprun, said on Thursday. He was speaking at the 9th international forum Fuel and Energy Complex of Ukraine: Present and Future in Kiev.
"Since the Russian Federation is the largest gas supplier and strategic partner of Ukraine in the sphere of transit and gas supply, gas transportation system modernization will be impossible without Russia's participation," he said. Chuprun said that Ukraine's cooperation with Russia in the oil and gas sector was extremely important.
"We are confident that the post-crisis economic recovery, as well as the lack of alternatives to natural gas as a primary energy source, will allow the Ukrainian gas pipeline system to remain the most cost-effective route for Russian natural gas to Europe," Chuprun said.
He added that the issue of upgrading the pipeline system should be discussed only in the Ukraine-EU-Russia format, because "only if we act together, the three of us shall be able to cope with this problem and make the world sure for decades to come each of the countries of Europe will have energy security."
Chuprun said that modernization as such made no sense, unless it had long-term guarantees as to the amounts of transit of Russian gas and its volume of consumption in the European countries.
"In order to modernize it we need to know how large Europe’s consumption will be at least until 2019, and how much Russia will be transiting through our system," Chuprun said.