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Ukrainian President Doubts Gazprom-Naftogaz Merger

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych (file photo)
Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has said he doesn't support Russia's proposal to merge its Gazprom gas company with Ukraine's state gas company, Naftogaz.

The UNIAN news agency quoted Yanukovych as saying today that the proposal, which came from Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin last week, was "an unexpected impromptu," but that this "does not mean that Ukraine will consider the idea."

Gazprom is much larger than Naftogaz. A merger of the two would likely give Russia some control over Ukraine's gas-related assets.

Meanwhile, the European Union's energy chief today said that the EU will play no part in the proposal to merge Gazprom and Naftogaz, saying the decision is up to Moscow and Kyiv.

compiled from agency reports