Ukraine is the Key Gas Transit Country for Europe - EU Commission Representative

KYIV, Ukraine, February 24, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --

European commission spokesperson on energy Marlene Holzner stated that Ukrainian gas transporting system is one of the main pipelines to deliver gas to Europe. "Unique geographical location of Ukraine and its gas storage capacities mean that Ukraine can offer increased flexibility of gas supply," said Marlene Holzner, reported Interfax Ukraine.

European Commission is convinced that Ukraine needs to elaborate a long-term strategy to ensure its position as the leading gas transporting country. Marlene Holzner noted there was no doubt Ukrainian gas transporting system is important for the EU and wider European continent.

Early this February the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych reckoned that modernization of Ukrainian gas transporting system would be one of the main tasks on the agenda of the potential tripartite gas consortium. Consortium would be a platform for establishing unified energy cooperation rules and involve main gas transit agent - Ukraine, gas provider - Russia, and consumer - Europe. According to the President, tripartite gas consortium can guarantee the protection of interests of all involved parties.

Renovation of Ukraine's gas transporting system would allow for the increase of its transfer capacity. Currently, Ukraine uses about two thirds of the estimated capacity of the system, which already supplies 70 percent of Russian gas export to Europe. Continuing using the existing pipeline is advantageous since building alternate gas transporting routes requires time, financial and human resources, and creates unnecessary threats to the environment. The overhaul of the "Urengoy - Pomary - Uzhgorod" part of Ukrainian gas transporting system is set to start in 2012.

Additionally, Ukrainian government plans to amend state legislation regulating the functioning of the state company, responsible for the extraction, transportation, and refinement of natural gas and crude oil, - NJSC "Naftogaz". The changes will provide for the separation of the functions of extraction, transportation and sales of gas between financially and legally independent companies.

After the changes come into effect, Ukrainian legislation will reflect the norms of the EU Directive N2003/55. The reform ensued as part of country's commitment to the European Energy Community (EEC), which Ukraine joined in 2011. Ukraine plans to guarantee its energy security and integrate into the European energy system by joining the EEC. The EEC aims to establish a common regulatory framework through extending EU standards.

Worldwide News Ukraine

CONTACT: For information, contact Maria Ivanova, Project Manager at Worldwide News Ukraine.

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