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Ukraine begins importing gas via Hungary
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Saturday, 30 Mar 2013
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Ukrainian Journal reported that Ukraine on Thursday began importing natural gas via a gas pipeline in Hungary, making it the second route for the country’s imports of European gas.

Prime Minister Mykola Azarov said that the move underscores Ukraine’s persistent efforts to reduce imports of Russian gas and to increase imports of gas from elsewhere in order to secure greater energy independence.

Mr Azarov at a press conference in Budapest said that "I am pleased to inform you that the first molecule of Hungarian gas has today crossed the Ukrainian-Hungarian border. This is a very big event. It really means a breakthrough to end the energy dependence.”
Ukraine since November 2012 has been importing a small amount of European gas via a pipeline in Poland, but the Hungarian route offers a greater capacity.

The Hungarian pipelines have capacity to move up to 5 billion cu m/year of gas to Ukraine, while the Polish pipelines after a 6-month upgrade will be able to move up to 2 billion cu m/year, according to Energy and Coal Industry Minister Eduard Stavytskiy.
Mr Stavytskiy said that the two routes combined will be able to move up to 7 billion cubic meters of natural gas from Europe in 2013.

All European gas supplies are carried out according to an agreement signed between Naftogaz and Germany's RWE in May 2012. The agreement calls for supplies of 5 billion cu m of gas in 2013 with the possibility of eventually expanding volumes to 10 billion cu m/year.

Mr Stavytskiy said that Ukraine will increase the imports if European gas prices continue to be lower than those in Russia. He said that “If the economic efficiency allows us to buy [European] gas, we will continue to do it.”

Ukraine was purchasing gas at USD 380/1,000 cu m in Europe in the first quarter, compared with USD 406/1,000 cu m in Russia in the first quarter of 2013.

Source - Ukrainian Journal

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