Putin Spoke about the Risks of Stopping Gas Transit through Ukraine

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At the same time, the Russian leader recalled that Moscow announced its readiness to achieve any agreements with Kyiv with the participation of the European Commission. There is a risk of the transit termination of Russian gas through the territory of Ukraine, Naftogaz with new lawsuits exacerbates the situation in negotiations with Gazprom on a new contract, Russian President Vladimir Putin told reporters following the BRICS summit on Thursday. What do we see today? What is actually happening? Once again, Naftogaz filed yet another lawsuit claiming over 6 billion. This is complete nonsense. All they do is make things worse. What for? Ukraine wants the contract to be governed by Ukrainian law? Fine, we are ready. Ukraine wants the contract to be governed by European law, and undertakes to abide by it? We are ready, go ahead. If Ukraine succeeds in implementing European law on time, it is fine with us. In Europe, this is a matter of separating generating and transit companies. If they are able to do it within the remaining period of time, fine. They assume obligations to Europe, not us, so let them do this, we are ready. Some things are simply beyond our reach. For this reason, there is a risk that transit will stop, considering the circumstances that I have mentioned. Putin stressed that Russia was ready to reach any agreement with support from the European Commission. Reverse gas deliveries and price This is total nonsense, and we understand this all too well. However, we do not make a fuss about it so as not to escalate tensions. We have already said that we are ready to cut the price of direct supplies by 20 or even 25 percent. At the same time, the Russian leader emphasized that Russia was ready to cooperate with Ukraine both in transit and in supplying it with gas, while its price may be 25% lower than the current one. “Regarding negotiations with Ukraine and whether there is a threat that transit will come to an end, we have said time and again that we are ready to work with Ukraine on shipping our gas to Europe through Ukraine, as well as on gas supplies to Ukraine itself at lower prices than what Ukraine pays for the same Russian gas obtained through the would-be reverse gas flow from Europe”, Putin said. Putin emphasized that reverse of Russian gas to Ukraine is practically impossible. “I would like it to be clear for everyone: reverse gas deliveries are unfeasible. It is not possible for natural gas to flow in one direction within one half of the pipeline, and in another direction in the second half. There is absolutely no way to achieve this. We know how they do it technology-wise. Once the gas is supplied, it is channelled through a looping pipe they built for this purpose in order to pump it back to Ukraine. It was built in the Soviet times as a transit pipeline with its branches reaching across Ukraine. They count some volumes as delivered, and then adjust the calculations, as if the supplies came from Europe. This is total nonsense, and we understand this all too well. However, we do not make a fuss about it so as not to escalate tensions”, noted the president. He recalled that the issue of gas prices for Ukraine was discussed at a meeting of leaders of the Ukrainian party Opposition Platform - For Life, Viktor Medvedchuk and Yuri Boyko, with Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. “There was a time when Mr. Medvedchuk and Mr. Boiko met with the Russian Prime Minister. Mr. Medvedev asked them at the time: “Why do you care? You are not government members [in Ukraine] and will hardly enter the cabinet.” I believe that they answered this question in a very mature manner. They said: “What matters for us is that Ukraine and the Ukrainian consumers receive cheaper gas. It must cost 25 percent less. If we can do this, or at least launch this process, this will make us happy.” I believe this political stance to be mature and in the interests of the people of Ukraine”, Putin said. TASS