Ukraine has no gas debt to Russia – Tymoshenko
The Prime Minister urged investigation into gas sector corruption
Ukraine has no gas debt, Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko said on Friday, Itar-Tass reported.
“I think President [Viktor Yushchenko] must know that debts he is talking about are not the debts of Ukraine but bad debts of RosUkrEnergo. Ukraine owns nothing to RosUkrEnergo,” Tymoshenko said.
The Prime Minister urged investigation into gas sector corruption and voiced hope that her government would manage to suppress corruption and to sign direct and transparent contracts.
Tymoshenko also hopes that next year’s gas price for Ukraine will stay at the level declared in the recent memorandum of the Ukrainian and Russian premiers. “We should wait for signing a [gas] agreement. I think that the agreement will confirm the price declared in the memorandum signed by Mr. Putin and me. The memorandum says that we will switch to market prices within three years, and the switch will be proportionate and gradual,” Tymoshenko said.
The Ukrainian premier hopes that Ukraine and Russia will sign strategic agreements within weeks and “there will be no questions of middlemen or gas debts.”
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev ordered Gazprom CEO Alexei Miller on Thursday to collect the gas debt from Ukraine. Miller told the president that Ukraine owed $2.4 billion for Russian gas.
Naftohaz Ukrayiny CEO Vladimir Trykolych said that Naftohaz owed $1.26-1.27 billion to RosUkrEnergo. “That is the entire sum of the debt,” he said. Naftohaz has no debt to Gazprom, he added.