Russia, Ukraine, EU ministers may discuss gas on May 16

May 13, 2014

The European Commission has said a new date of the Russia-Ukraine-EU meeting will be announced shortly, ITAR-TASS said on May 12.

“The meeting with the participation of the Russian and Ukrainian energy ministers, and European Commissioner for Energy Guenther Oettinger may be held soon,” the European Commission spokesperson, Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen said on May 12.

On May 13, the European Commission officials will meet with Ukrainian government members in Brussels to discuss the results of talks on the future of Russian gas supplies to Europe and Kiev.

Earlier, Russian ambassador to the EU, Vladimir Chizhov, said an expert trilateral meeting of Russian, Ukrainian and EU representatives on natural gas would be held in Brussels May 12.

“As for the ministerial meeting, there is high probability it will be held May 16 and the Russian Energy Minister, Alexander Novak, the European Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger, and the Ukrainian minister, Yuriy Prodan, will meet at the conference table,” Chizhov said. “Athens is very likely to be the venue of these talks, as an informal meeting of EU energy ministers will be held there May 16.”

“In the first place, there’s the problem of payment for gas and a return of the debt, the existence of which is not denied by anyone, even the authorities in Kiev, which however have claims against the amount of debt,” Chizhov said.

“Secondly, it’s the assuring of uninterrupted transits of Russian gas to EU countries, including the problem of replenishment of reserves in the underground tank farms on the territory of Ukraine where extra volumes of gas are dispatched to Europe from in the wintertime if the demand for gas makes unexpected hikes,” he said.

“The third issue is the alternative reversed supplies of gas to Ukraine from the EU member-states,” Chizhov said.

Copyright: ITAR-TASS, 2014