(RIA Novosti) - Ukraine's new prime minister met with the U.S. ambassador Monday to discuss Ukraine's role as a key energy-transit country to Europe.
Concerns about Russia's reliability as a natural-gas provider arose in Europe earlier in the year when energy giant Gazprom and Kiev were locked in a bitter price dispute. The Russian concern claimed Ukraine had siphoned off European-bound gas supplies traveling via two pipelines on its territory after some consumers registered shortfalls, reports Trend.
Viktor Yanukovych's press service said the premier, who was confirmed in his post for a second time Friday, had discussed supplies of natural gas from former Soviet stable mates Russia and Turkmenistan with Ambassador William Taylor.
"The talks focused on the social and economic situation in Ukraine and ways to resolve current problems," a spokesperson said. "The sides discussed in detail the situation concerning the Russian and Turkmen natural gas supplies to Ukraine and guaranteeing the transit of energy supplies to Europe."
Yanukovych said these issues would be in the focus of talks when he visited Moscow, Brussels and Washington.
The press service said Yanukovych had also discussed with the ambassador how European integration processes in Ukraine and effective cooperation with European and Euro-Atlantic structures were proceeding in his country.