European Commission: Gas transit route through Ukraine should be maintained (exclusive)
Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. 27
By Aygun Badalova - Trend:
European Commission considers that the gas transit route through Ukraine should be maintained, says Maros Sefcovic, the Commission's vice-president for Energy Union.
"We think that Ukraine over the last two years, despite the geopolitical tensions in eastern border, has proven to be a reliable transit country, and therefore we want to see that the transit of gas through Ukraine will continue in the future," he told Trend in a phone interview.
He added that this issue is being discussed not only with European partners, but also with Russian partners.
Sefcovic also said that for those discussions the most important thing would be to assess the overall consumption in Europe, and to look for what will be the most cost efficient and economical way to transport the gas to the EU.
Russian company Gazprom has stated that it intends to cease gas supply to Europe through Ukraine.
The company's transit contract with Ukraine is valid until 2019.
However, in a recent interview with German newspaper Die Welt, Russia's Energy Minister Alexander Novak said he does not rule out a partial continuation of gas supply to Europe through Ukraine after commissioning of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.
Gazprom supplied 158.56 billion cubic meters of gas to European countries in 2015, according to data from the company. Approximately 82 percent of the gas supply from Russia goes to Western Europe, while 18 percent is delivered to the Central Europe.