The price of gas for households will not be increased, President Viktor Yanukovych said at a meeting with candidates for district state administrations’ chairmen, according to the Press office of President Viktor Yanukovych.
"We must not put the burden of 2009 gas contract’s drawbacks on citizens’ shoulders. We will keep prices at their current level. We have no right to raise them," he said.
The President reminded that due to the unfavorable 2009 gas agreements Ukraine pays an unbearably high price for gas. "We pay the highest price for gas in the world. Currently, the price for Ukraine is $516 [without the $100 discount introduced by the Kharkiv Agreements]," he said.
Every month, Viktor Yanukovych said, Ukraine is about $ 500 million short to cover the losses for the purchased gas.
"We collect $500 million in Ukraine monthly, and pay one billion," he said, explaining that the situation is due to low tariffs for the population and utility companies.
"For us to collect another $500 million, we would have to raise the tariffs. And it means increasing housing prices, utility tariffs, the price of gas for the population. We did not do it. We never did it because we did not have the increase of citizens’ incomes that would allow us to "burden" them with such a price," he said.
Instead, Viktor Yanukovych said, Ukraine was forced to accumulate debts. "We were taking loans and paying these $500 million monthly. So the situation has been damaging the national economy. And we have not been able to resolve it so far," said the President.