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Russia, Ukraine strive for mutually beneficial co-operation in gas sphere

February 01, 2014, 6:58 UTC+3 1
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KIEV, February 1 (Itar-Tass) - Russia and Ukraine will continue looking for new principles and mechanisms of mutually beneficial co-operation in the gas sphere, Ukraine’s Ministry of Energy and Coal Industry announced on Friday after Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak met with his Ukrainian counterpart Eduard Stavitsky.

The parties have agreed to ensure reliable and uninterrupted oil transportation through the Ukrainian territory, to focus on technical re-equipment and reconstruction programmes for the existing hydroelectric power stations and programmes for engineering, construction and commissioning of new hydroelectric power stations and pumped-storage hydroelectric power stations, alongside to co-operate in manufacturing, delivery, installation and operation of additional equipment for hydroelectric power plants.

Besides, the parties decided to intensify co-operation in developing the Pallas gas field on the continental shelf of Ukraine in the north-eastern part of the Black Sea.

According to the Russian Ministry of Energy, “the two sides have discussed prospects for co-operation in the electric power sphere, deliveries of Russian hydrocarbons and co-operation among nuclear enterprises of the two countries”.

As it was reported earlier, the ministers’ meeting was initiated by Ukraine. The meeting aimed, first of all, to address the issues concerning the transit of Russian hydrocarbons through the Ukrainian territory, oil and gas supplies to Ukrainian customers as well as operation of nuclear power facilities.

Valentin Zemlyansky, an independent expert and former spokesman for Ukraine’s national oil and gas company Naftogaz, said there should be no problems with gas supplies.

“The European Union will hardly allow any transit interruptions as long as temperatures in Europe remain below zero,” he said.

At the same time, Alexander Medvedev, the deputy chairman of Russia’s gas monopoly Gazprom management committee, said the Ukrainian side had missed the deadline for addressing the issue of paying the accumulated $2.7 billion debt.

“We have expected representatives of the Ukrainian side to come to us. However, due to the dismissal of the Ukrainian government, no one from Ukraine has arrived for talks,” he said. “But we hope that the agreements will be implemented.

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