Ukraine Wants To Restore Gas Exports To Poland

KIEV, Ukraine -- The Ukrainian cabinet of ministers is currently preparing a resolution which will allow the country to restore its gas exports to Poland, the Kommersant-Ukraina paper said on Wednesday citing own sources.

Ukraine halted gas exports to Poland January 1, 2011. Under a contract between Russia's Gazprom and Ukraine's Naftorgaz, Ukraine is not allowed to export Russian gas abroad.

On the other hand, a decree, dating back to 2001, obliges Ukraine to sell gas recovered at home only on the domestic market.

"The cabinet is preparing an amendment to this decree which will allow the country to export up 300 million cubic meters of gas to Poland this year, and up to 3 billion cubic meters the next year," the paper said.

In light of the fact that the Polish prices on gas will hit $290-300 for one cubic meter this spring, Naftogaz could gain up to $90 million.

Gazprom is concerned by these plans, the paper said. "We can agree a small flow of gas at the level of 100-200 million cubic meters; the capacity of the Polish gas market is 14 billion cubic meters, an export volume higher than $1.5 cubic meters is the tenth of this market," the paper cited a senior Gazprom source.

Gazprom will try to persuade Ukraine to export no more than 1.5 billion cubic meters of gas, the source said.

Source: RIA Novosti