20 December 2012, 15:28

"Ukraine should have leased out its gas pipeline"

"Ukraine should have leased out its gas pipeline"

Ukraine was wrong to decide against leasing out its gas pipeline network, President Putin said during his news conference on Thursday.

It was a strategic error on the part of Ukraine to turn down an offer by Russia and its European partners to lease its gas pipeline network without breaching the Ukrainian legislation and providing for it to remain Ukrainian property, - Putin said.

If Ukraine had agreed to the offer, Russia would have undertaken to develop and fill the Ukrainian gas system with fuel, the president said.

Russia is still ready to continue a gas dialogue with Ukraine, even though control of Ukraine’s gas transportation grid has become a stumbling block in Kiev’s talks with Gazprom.

In return for lowering gas prices, the Russian gas holding wants control of the system that guarantees gas transit through Ukraine to Europe.

Voice of Russia, RIA

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