KIEV, October 23. /TASS/. Ukraine’s national energy company Naftogaz has announced plans to build a new gas pipeline from Poland, the Ukrainian news agency UNIAN reported on Thursday.
“Special international initiative groups are now working. Pre-project studies are under way,” UNIAN quoted Naftogaz Deputy CEO Oleksandr Todyichuk as saying.
“I believe this is very real (the construction of a new gas pipeline) because Poland wants, among other things, to use Ukrainian underground storage facilities. This pipeline will work in both directions,” Todyichuk said.
Poland will have several sources of natural gas supplies to Ukraine, the Naftogaz deputy head said. “This is an inter-connector that will link Germany with Poland. This also means a liquefied gas terminal in Swinoujscie and the Lithuanian terminal in the future,” Todyichuk said.
The project of expanding the Polish gas route can be implemented no earlier than in 2017, the Naftogaz deputy head said.
Poland has been the first country, through which Ukraine has started to pump natural gas from the European Union, but Poland’s technical capacity allows supplying no more than 1.5 billion cubic meters of gas annually, while about 6 billion cubic meters can be pumped from Hungary and 10 billion cubic meters from Slovakia.
Ukraine annually consumes about 40-45 billion cu m of natural gas, with more than half of this amount earlier purchased from the Russian gas monopoly Gazprom.
Russia and Ukraine continue gas talks with the EU’s mediation to resolve the gas dispute between the two countries and ensure uninterrupted gas supplies to Europe in winter.
Tuesday’s three-party gas meeting once again ended without the expected result as no sources of financing for the repayment of Kiev’s debt were found. The next meeting is scheduled for October 29.
Ukraine’s failure to repay its debt for already supplied gas is the key obstacle to a temporary gas deal with Russia, EU Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger said after the three-party talks.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk said he is confident that “if talks with Russia fail, gas can be replaced with additional reverse-flow supplies and heating oil.” “We can increase reverse supplies. We’re discussing with European partners the technical possibility of gas supplies from the EU,” the Ukrainian premier said.