Ukraine says the price of Russian gas should be set by mid-September (epa)
August 23, 2007 (RFE/RL) -- Ukrainian Foreign Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has expressed concern that his country still does not have an agreement on natural gas deliveries from Russia for next year.
Yatsenyuk told RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service on August 22 that he informed President Viktor Yushchenko and Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych that efforts to reach an agreement had broken down.
"According to our intergovernmental agreement, we should already have a signed protocol about gas deliveries for 2008. But we don't have it, because we haven't received either instructions or a delegation of staff," Yatsenyuk said.
Yatsenyuk noted, however, that unofficial talks on the gas issue may be taking place.
In October 2006, Ukraine and Russia signed a deal for 2007 in which Ukraine would pay no more than $130 per 1,000 cubic meters of gas. The price is due to increase for 2008. Ukrainian officials have said they are seeking a price of $143 per 1,000 cubic meters.
Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Andriy Kliuyev says the 2008 price should be determined by mid-September.
After Russia's state-owned gas monopoly Gazprom cut off supplies to Ukraine in January 2006, the two countries signed a complicated five-year agreement that would eventually bring the rate Kyiv pays up to European market prices, which currently stand at $230 per 1,000 cubic meters.