On 30 June 2015 another round of trilateral Russia-Ukraine-EU gas consultations took place in Vienna.
Summing up the results, Alexander Novak, Russian Minister of Energy, said gas supplies to Ukraine and transit to EU consumers in the second quarter of 2015 had been carried out in accordance with previous arrangements. This assessment was shared by all participants in the consultations. Over that period, 1.9 billion cubic metres (bcm) of natural gas were supplied to Ukrainian consumers. In the third quarter some 7 bcm of gas need to be injected into Ukrainian gas storage facilities to achieve the total level of about 19 bcm.
According to Mr. Novak, the Government of the Russian Federation has agreed to grant Ukraine a discount of $40 per 1000 cubic meters.
“This level of the discount fully reflects the situation on the European market,” he said. “We are surprised by the statements of Ukrainian colleagues who had expected a greater discount. The Ukrainian side has no grounds to suspend gas purchases as the prices proposed, adjusted by the discount, are absolutely competitive. In my view, this can only be a political decision since there are no economic reasons behind this”.
The consultations also addressed the issue of assistance to be provided by European financial institutions to Ukraine in order to ensure timely gas injections into underground storage facilities.
No final document was supposed to be signed following today’s consultations. Mr. Novak stressed that Russia and Ukraine are currently interacting on the basis of the gas supply and gas transit contracts of 2009, and today there is no need to put any additional decisions on paper.