Ukraine continues to diversify its sources of gas from European countries, but Russia remains the country’s main partner in this area, Ukrainian Energy and Coal Industry Minister Eduard Stavytsky said.“Having opened a third route through Slovakia, we can fully diversify deliveries of natural gas to Ukraine, but this is not to say that we will not be working with our Russian colleagues. We will be working, and for us this is today a priority direction, as the main volume of gas moves through Russian territory,” Stavytsky told the press in Kyiv on Wednesday.The minister again rejected Gazprom reproaches regarding the dubiousness of Ukraine’s scheme for reverse gas receipt from European countries. “Absolutely everything is lawful in the context of existing contracts,” he said.Click here to read the full article on interfax.co.uk.
Ukraine is now on the road that other former Soviet-bloc countries travelled a decade ago, and step-by-step it is fulfilling the conditions set by the EU for the signing the association agreement with the European Union, European Commission President Romano Prodi has said. “It’s rare for world leaders to have the chance to pragmatically achieve an idealistic goal, to unite bold dreams and careful statesmanship at the same time. Yet such an opportunity is now upon us, as the time for the European Union and Ukraine to come closer together, to create a bridge between east and west, is at hand,” Prodi wrote in a guest post in the Financial Times newspaper. He said that in 2004, he oversaw the largest single enlargement of the European Union in its history when ten new member states joined the EU, mainly from the former Soviet bloc, and added that those same states are now “bulwarks of Europe.” “If Europe’s leaders take this opportunity, Ukraine is clearly determined to be even more – a catalyst for Europe, a bridge to Russia, and a testament to European values in its own right,” Prodi said. Click here to read the full article on ft.com.
The Russian natural gas that Ukraine buys from German company RWE costs the country $100 per 1,000 cubic meters less than the Russian gas that Ukraine buys on the border with Russia, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov has said.“We currently buy gas from RWE and pump it through Poland, Slovakia and Hungary. This gas costs us less than the Russian gas that we buy on the border with Russia, and RWE sells us the same gas that it buys from Russia,” he said at a meeting with French business representatives in Paris on Tuesday.“The gas, after passing through a long chain of pipelines and returning to us, is $100 cheaper,” he said. Azarov said that Ukraine annually overpays Russia $7 billion for gas. Click here to read the full article on interfax.co.uk.
Ukraine in 2013 could harvest around 20 million tonnes of wheat compared to 15.76 million tonnes threshed in 2012, the head of the agro-meteorological department of the Ukrainian Weather Center, Tetiana Adamenko, has said. “The harvest has been formed for early grain crops. We expect that around 20 million tonnes of wheat, 2-3 million tonnes of rye and barley will be harvested,” she told. The expert said that this year due to the non-traditional warm second half of spring farmers in southern regions have started harvesting early crops, which is earlier than usual. She said that the mass harvesting of grain would start in a week. In addition, Adamenko said that at present, late crops are mainly in a good state. “Today the moisture of soil for later crops is better than it was last year, even in the southern regions, which gives us the grounds to expect a good harvest of corn, sunflower, millet and buckwheat,” she said. Click here to read the full article on KyivPost.
Vice Premier of Ukraine Oleksandr Vilkul has reported that Ukraine is seriously intending to gain the right to host the Winter Olympics in 2022. “Ukraine is planning to submit a bid and win the right to host the 2022 Winter Olympics – this is a part of the state national strategy, as well as the strategy for the development of the Carpathian region and all of the western lands of Ukraine,” he said delivering a speech at the ABC Ukraine & Partners conference in Kyiv. Vilkul said that the holding of the Olympics would favor the development of the Carpathian region’s infrastructure and promote the tourist potential of Lviv and Carpathian region abroad. He gave as an example Spain’s experience of holding the Summer Olympics in 1992, which brought a “Barcelona-effect” of powerful economic growth. Click here to read the full article on interfax.com.ua.
Montenegro’s Prime Minister Milo Đukanović paid an official visit to Ukraine, where he met with Ukraine’s President Mikola Azarov for talks on boosting economic cooperation between the two countries. The two officials expressed satisfaction with the growth of cooperation in the area of tourism, adding that the best impetus to further improvement of the cooperation would be the establishment of direct and regular air service between the two capitals. Prime Minister Đukanović and President Azarov also discussed the volume of trade exchange between the two states and agreed that the advanced cooperation, in particular in the areas of energy supply and food production, would significantly increase both investments and volume of foreign trade exchange. Montenegrin and Ukrainian governments officials signed in Kiev four agreements related to international road transport, cooperation in case of natural and other catastrophes, cooperation in combating crime and an agreement on scientific and technological cooperation and in the field of youth, sports and physical culture. Click here to read the full article on balkans.com.
Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius has said that there is little time left ahead of the Eastern Partnership summit in Vilnius, but success can still be achieved. He said this in Brussels while presenting the priorities of Lithuania’s presidency of the EU and speaking about the upcoming summit. Lithuania takes over the presidency of the EU Council on July 1 this year and will host the Eastern Partnership summit in November. Linkevicius said that expectations of the event should be well grounded. “If you overstate expectations and don’t achieve them, then there will be disappointment. Neither we nor our partners deserve it,” he said. Linkevicius said that “the signing of the Association Agreement with Ukraine will be an additional success.” “There remains little time, but it’s possible, and we all know what needs to be done,” Linkevicius said. Click here to read the full article on KyivPost.
Ukraine’s gas transport system is in a good condition, but the modernization of pumping stations will significantly increase its effectiveness. Kay Ewaldsen, managing director at Germany’s Ferrostaal Industrieanlagen, the company invited by the Ukrainian side to modernize the Bar compressor station of the Soyuz gas pipeline, said this in an interview with Kommersant-Ukraine. “Based on what we’ve seen, we can say that the gas transport system is in a good condition. However, the modernization of pumping stations will significantly increase its effectiveness. The replacement of old, inefficient gas turbines with modern turbines will reduce the amount of gas used for pumping,” Ewaldsen said. He also said that German experts had made such a conclusion by analyzing not only the Bar station, but also the whole gas transport system.”Despite its age, it is in a good condition – the system was monitored and very well maintained. Thus, the answer to the question which is better: a new gas transport system or repair and modernization, is very simple – the last option is the best,” he said.Click here to read the full article on Ukrinform.
Ukraine has signed 11 agreements with business partners at the first international annual business conference, ABC: Ukraine & Partners, in Kyiv on June 13-14.In particular, among the signed documents are a memorandum of mutual understanding between the Cabinet of Ministers and mining and metallurgical enterprises and an agreement of intent on the development of science and education in Ukraine between the Cabinet and Intel Ukraine.Intel and Ukraine’s Education Ministry had earlier signed a memorandum of mutual understanding and cooperation in 2005-2007. Under it, Ukraine joined the Intel Teach to the Future charitable and educational program whose main goal is to introduce innovative teaching and information and communications technologies in the educational process. Continue reading
Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius has said he believes that the failure to sign an Association Agreement between Ukraine and the European Union will affect the Eastern Partnership. “This will not be good. I said that time was not on our side. This is not the case. If we wait, we may lose everything,” the foreign minister of Lithuania, which takes over the presidency in the EU Council on July 1, said. When asked what he meant by saying “lose everything,” Linkevicius said: “I mean the process. We should support the signing of the agreement. After all, the signing is not the end. It still needs to be ratified by 29 parliaments. There are still a lot of real, not artificial barriers [to the agreement]. If we lose now, I think we may lose it all.” The minister said that he meant “the essence of the Eastern Partnership.” Click here to read the full article on interfax.co.uk.