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Russia Retains Presence on Ukrainian Gas Market Despite Reduced Demand

© Sputnik / Ilya Pitaliov / Go to the photo bankRussia’s energy giant Gazprom
Russia’s energy giant Gazprom - Sputnik International
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Russia's energy giant Gazprom has retained its Ukrainian market despite Kiev's demand for gas falling amid an economic downturn in the country, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said on Saturday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Friday, Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said that Russia's gas price for Ukraine in the second quarter of 2016 will stand at under $180 per 1,000 cubic meters.

"Ukraine has physically been consuming less gas as a result of the economic downturn, many companies that used to consume gas have gone out of business…This does not mean that we have lost the market, we are supplying gas," Novak told reporters.

Russian Gas Price For Ukraine $185 From April 1, Europe’s Price $170 - Sputnik International
Russian Gas Price For Ukraine $185 From April 1, Europe’s Price $170
On Thursday, the Russian government's quarterly discount for Ukraine of $17.77 per 1,000 cubic meters expired, with the end of first quarter price amounting to $212 per 1,000 cubic meters. The discount had been provided as part of the winter package agreed on by Russia, Ukraine and the European Union.

The same day, Naftogaz said that it had no plans to resume purchases of natural gas from Russia's energy giant Gazprom from April 1 but will continue to ensure uninterrupted transit of Russian gas to European consumers.

In October 2015, the energy company said that the country was stopping gas purchases from Gazprom, and any decision to continue to import gas from this supplier would depend on prices.

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