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    Russian gas price hike to jeopardize Russia-Ukraine relations

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    KIEV, October 25 (RIA Novosti) - A sharp rise in Russian natural gas prices will create a shock situation in bilateral relations with Ukraine, the head of the Ukrainian National Security and Defense Council said Tuesday. According to Anatoliy Kinakh, relations between the two countries will take a negative turn if Russia raises its natural gas price from $50 to $90-$120 per 1,000 cu m.

    "Europe gets 40% of gas via the Ukrainian gas transportation system and a sharp rise in the Russian natural gas price will affect the European economy as well," Kinakh said.

    According to Kinakh, pricing should be left unchanged in 2006 and, starting in 2007, Russia and Ukraine should start gradually moving towards higher gas prices.

    Kinakh also said it was important for Ukraine to partially diversify its sources of gas and oil supplies and introduce energy-saving technologies at its enterprises.

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