Ukraine refused to transit Russian gas to Europe through its pipelines

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Ukraine again today refused to transit Russian gas to Europe through its export pipelines.

Gazprom had requested that Naftogaz Ukrainy accept 99.2 mcm for export to Moldova, the Balkans and Slovakia, but Ukraine has now declined on the grounds that there was not a technical agreement in place for gas transit throughout 2009. However, given that there is a valid transit contract in place covering 2003-2013, and given that in 2007 Ukraine was able to transit gas without any technical agreement, Gazprom does not believe this is a valid reason for Ukraine to refuse to transmit gas. Gazprom is currently informing Naftogaz Ukrainy on a daily basis of the volumes it wishes to transit.

Gazprom’s Statement: Ukraine again refuses to transit Russian gas to Europe

Today at 02:00 hours another application was forwarded to the Unified Dispatch Department of Naftogaz Ukrainy for the transit of 99.2 million cubic meters per day from 10:00 hours through GIS Sudzha. 13.9 million cubic meters are intended for Moldovan consumers, 63.1 million through GIS Orlovka for the Balkans, and 22.2 million cubic meters through GIS Uzhorod for Slovak consumers.
In response we again received a refusal to transit gas under the pretext of an absence of a technical agreement on the terms of gas supply-acceptance at bordering GIS for 2009. The absence of the technical agreement does not provide grounds for the cessation of the transit through the Ukrainian territory, as there is an acting transit contract for 2003-2013.

Usually, technical agreements between Gazprom and Naftogaz Ukrainy were signed at the end of the year, while in 2007 there was no technical agreement altogether, which did not impede either the transit of gas to

Europe or its supplies to Ukrainian consumers. In the current crisis situation the absence of that or another optional technical document, which is not a part of the contract, cannot serve as the grounds for the refusal to transit gas.

In this connection Gazprom demands Naftogaz Ukrainy to immediately fulfill its contract obligations and intake the Russian gas into the Ukrainian transportation system for transit to European consumers. The tap on the export trunk line on the Ukrainian territory after GIS Sudzha is still closed.

On the Russian side taps have been open for the third day running at the entrance to the Ukrainian territory at GIS Sudzha, which allows for providing gas supplies to European consumers at any minute.