"We expect annual growth of transit to Europe in 2016 up to 80 billion cubic meters of gas. That is 19 percent more than last year's indicators," Belyavsky said in a Facebook post.
Ukraine is a key country for transit of Russian gas in Europe. However, for years Russia and Ukraine have been engaged in gas disputes. In June 2014, Ukraine’s energy company Naftogaz appealed to the Arbitration Court in Stockholm, seeking a retroactive revision of its 2009-2019 natural gas transit contract with Russia.
On Monday, the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce is expected to begin hearings on the dispute, according to Naftogaz Business Development Director Yuriy Vitrenko.
Russia is seeking alternative ways of gas deliveries to Europe. It works on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project that will allow delivering gas to northern Europe through the Baltic Sea.