KIEV, March 23. /TASS/. Ukraine will most likely either fully stop import of the Russian natural gas since April 1 or will acquire small volumes, Ukraine’s Minister of Energy and Coal Industry Vladimir Demchishin said on Monday.
"There is no need to purchase the Russian natural gas for the time being. There is no sense of buying it at a price higher than in Europe. We will probably stop buying it," the minister added.
Weather conditions also contribute to the decline in the natural gas consumption, Demchishin said.
Import may continue but "Ukraine will not buy large volumes from April 1," he added.
Ukraine is going to sign the natural gas agreement with Russia on April 13-14, Demchishin said.
Russia and Ukraine will hold their next gas meeting with the European Union’s mediation before end of April, European Commission spokesperson Anna-Kaisa Itkonen said on Monday.
"The latest meeting ended just on Friday evening and that is why we don’t have a date for the next talks yet. We’re currently looking for possible dates for a new meeting and hope to hold it until the end of April," the spokesman said.
Russian and Ukrainian Energy Ministers Alexander Novak and Vladimir Demchishin, and also European Commission Vice-President for Energy Union Maros Sefcovic held talks in Brussels on March 20 to discuss the terms of a summer package of Russian natural gas supplies to Ukraine and gas transit to EU countries. The negotiating parties told reporters the next meeting would be held in mid-April in Berlin.