KOBOLEV: the talks in Brussels, Kiev wants to negotiate a winter gas package, similar to last year

On a tripartite gas negotiations between Ukraine, Russia and the European Commission, which will be held today, December 9, in Brussels, Kiev hopes to reach consensus on a «winter package», which would be similar to «winter packages» of 2014 and 2015. According to an UNIAN correspondent in Brussels, on the eve of talks, said the Chairman of «Naftogaz of Ukraine» Andrey Kobelev.

«The purpose of the meeting was to reach consensus on a new winter package, which was in meaning similar to those we had in 2014 and 2015 to ensure that this winter, «Gazprom» there are opportunities to sell gas, and Ukraine — to buy. We hope that the results of the discussion — I use the word «hope» because we know that from the Russian side Miller (Alexei Miller, Chairman of Gazprom – ed.) does not come — the Russian side is ready to sign an Annex to the contract to provide the technical ability for both parties to sell and buy. If the application is not signed, this process will be simply impossible», — said the head of «Naftogaz».

This KOBOLEV emphasized that the initiative of these negotiations was made by the European Commission, which informed the Ukrainian side that Russia is ready to sign.

«We hope that they (EK – ed.) realistic about the chances of signing. Although, again, we cannot be certain, because we have been these negotiations,» he said.

According to the Chairman of «Naftogaz», the Ukrainian side expects that «Gazprom» will make a price offer that will allow to decide «what amount, and when can we buy».

«Now can’t reveal the figures,» — said KOBOLEV asked about a possible price for Russian gas.

He also stated that the Ukrainian side «are always ready to buy from Gazprom if they will fit the regular rules of gas trade in Europe.»

«It was always our position. We want all of our contracts were valid, and that we are able to buy gas from as many sides, including «Gazprom», — said Kobolyev.

Answering the question of where Ukraine will receive gas in the case of not signing of the Annex to the contract with «Gazprom» during severe frosts, the head of «Naftogaz» said: «Winter is already strong, and we purchase our required gas from the European side. We just don’t want to exclude the possibility of having yet another supplier».

According to KOBOLEV, if necessary to meet «peak demand» is gas from underground storage facilities.

«Currently, the volume of $ 13.2 billion cubic meters. This is the level that allows us to say that until the end of winter we have enough gas,» he added.

In addition, said KOBOLEV, in the framework of a bilateral meeting with the European Commission, the Ukrainian side plans to discuss «the opening of the virtual reverse flow from Europe to Ukraine, which, we believe, even more important than the signing of the winter package».

«From a technical point of view it will allow us to purchase any volumes of gas without limitation only to the physical flow. Ukraine imported from the EU about 55 million cubic meters of gas per day, but it is the total amount of physical flow. What we need is to access the virtual stream that would allow us to take up to 200-250 million cubic meters per day, if we need such a number,» — said KOBOLEV.

Also, he said, Kiev is ready to reiterate that is a reliable transit partner and will keep stable transit to the EU.

«We also want to discuss with the EC’s recent decision on gas pipeline OPAL, which was a big surprise to us. We sent a letter to the German regulator about what we would like to be a party in terms of the discussion. Because we believe that this decision will have a serious impact not only on the Ukrainian gas market and the gas market of the countries of Central and Eastern Europe, particularly countries such as Poland, Slovakia, Hungary», — concluded the head of «Naftogaz».

Note, December 9, after more than a year of absence in Brussels will resume trilateral talks on gas between Ukraine, Russia and the EU. Ukraine is ready to resume purchases of Russian gas in case of refusal of Gazprom of the contract conditions take-or-pay, writes «Kommersant».

As writes the edition, Moscow intends to demand concessions, such as the refusal of Kiev from the antitrust fine in the amount of 6.4 billion dollars, imposed on «Gazprom». According to the newspaper, negotiations with the EC, the Russian side indicates that, given the colder the winter, the consumption peaks in January-February in Ukraine can be such that it exceeds the technical capabilities of the selection of UGS. A solution could be the purchase of 1,5-4 billion cubic meters of gas from Gazprom.

As we know, Andrey KOBOLEV in the last two months repeatedly said that the company is ready to buy gas in the Russian Federation subject to the signing of the additional agreement to the contract with Gazprom, which had abolished the principle of take-or-pay. At the same time, according to sources, the Russian side intends, in exchange for signing the additional agreement to require reciprocal concessions.

In particular, one can raise the question of the abolition of the fine to $ 6.4 billion., which the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine has ordered «to Gazprom» for violations on the «market of transit» through Ukraine.

The publication notes that «Gazprom» is ready to grant Ukraine a discount since now the price of Russian gas lower than the supply from the EU — about $ 182. vs 244 USD. for 1 thousand cubic meter (including delivery to the Ukrainian border). If the parties fail to reach agreement, negotiations will probably resume closer to the end of winter, when we will know the decision of the Stockholm arbitration, I believe the sources on the market.

As you know, in January 2016, the Committee I fined PAO «Gazprom» on 85,96 billion UAH for abuse of a monopoly position in the market of natural gas transit through the Ukrainian gas transportation system.

The deadline for the Committee’s decisions up to 4 may 2016.

PJSC «Gazprom» appealed the decision of the Committee, however, the commercial court of Kyiv returned the claim without consideration. The courts of all instances, including the Supreme court of Ukraine refused Gazprom’s complaint.




KOBOLEV: the talks in Brussels, Kiev wants to negotiate a winter gas package, similar to last year 09.12.2016

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