Ukraine tells Hungary it plans to reduce gas supply
The Hungarian minister responsible for energy matters said on Monday that Ukraine had informed the Hungarian government of its intention to reduce gas flow to Hungary by almost a quarter, dpa reported.
Speaking to the press after meeting with the prime minister, Csaba Molnar said that Ukraine had informed Hungary of its intention to reduce the delivery of natural gas on Monday from 38 million to 30 million cubic metres per day.
The minister said that 11 million of the expected 38 million cubic metres of gas was earmarked for Serbia and Bosnia. He warned that deliveries to those countries might be affected if Ukraine goes ahead with the reduction.
Molnar said that he had called a crisis meeting for later in the day to discuss the natural gas supply situation and possible measures to be taken by the government.
Hungary is expected to consume around 74 million cubic metres of gas on Monday, the minister noted. This figure is some 10 million higher than the previous day, and reflects a deepening of the winter freeze currently gripping the region.
Hungary is currently drawing on its large stockpiles of natural gas, currently about 3.6 billion cubic metres.
Hungary relies on Russia for the bulk of its natural gas. The Russian gas giant Gazprom cut supplies to the transit country, Ukraine, on January 1 in a dispute of pricing and unpaid bills.