KIEV, December 5 (Itar-Tass) — Ukraine’s parliament has postponed consideration of the country’s budget for 2012 expecting gas agreements with Russia, parliamentary speaker Vladimir Litvin told a meeting on Monday.
“We planned to start considering the budget and a program for social and economic development next Thursday. Now we propose to postpone this issue, as the gas talks have not been completed yet,” he said.
Earlier, the sides expressed their intention to sign new gas agreements until the end of this month. Kiev seeks to persuade Russia to cut a gas price and switch to the signing of short-term contracts. Ukraine hopes to adopt the budget for 2012 taking into account a new gas price.
On Sunday, Russian ambassador to Ukraine Mikhail Zurabov said he takes “with some cautiousness” the prospects for concluding a new gas deal between Russia and Ukraine in the near future.
“Russia and Ukraine hope that this month we will be able to sign all agreements that should regulate gas relations between the two countries in the future. The New Year is coming, and not only Russia and Ukraine, but also the European Union are interested in the new gas deal. We remember well the events that took place two years ago, when the unsettled problem in the gas industry resulted in disruption of Russian gas supplies to European countries,” the ambassador said.
“I can say with confidence that now this will not recur under any conditions, because the two countries’ leaders agreed that the countries will be guided by the agreements concluded earlier until new deals replace them,” Zurabov said.