Russian gas export monopoly Gazprom said on Thursday it had completely cut off gas supplies to Ukraine but was maintaining deliveries in full to customers in the European Union.
"We have fully cut off supplies to Ukraine as of 10:00 a.m. (0700 GMT) today," a Gazprom official told reporters. "We continue supplying Europe in full."
Ukraine state energy firm Naftogaz said, earlier, it has already seen a reduction of pressure in its gas pipelines after Russia cut supplies, and will now pump gas from its reserves.
"We see a reduction," a Naftogaz spokesman told Reuters.
Ukraine has guaranteed the transit of gas to Europe, which Russia's gas export monopoly Gazprom says runs on a separate pipeline. Naftogaz has said it has 17 billion cubic metres, or about 20 percent of its annual consumption, in gas reserves.
Russian state TV broadcast also reported that Gazprom ordered its pumping station on one of the pipeline routes to Ukraine to halt gas supplies on Thursday.
Ukrainian offer on price
Ukraine urged Russia on Thursday not to cut off gas supplies and for the first time named the price it is prepared to pay for Russian gas, Interfax news agency reported.
Russia's Gazprom export monopoly said late on Wednesday it would turn of the gas taps to Ukraine at 0700 GMT on Thursday after talks on a supply contract failed.
Ukraine is seeking a gas price of $201 per 1,000 cubic metres, Interfax cited a joint statement by President Viktor Yushchenko and Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko as saying.
Kiev is also proposing raising the transit tariffs that Russia pays to transport gas to Europe to no lower than $2 per 1,000 cubic metres of gas for 100 kilometres, the agency said.
Gazprom, which sends about a fifth of Europe's gas needs through Ukraine, has offered a price of $250 per 1,000 cubic metres, a steep rise from 2008's $179.50 but still about half the current European market price.
"The Russian Federation's proposal of raising the price to $250, while oil prices are falling sharply, constitutes the establishment of a central European gas price for Ukraine," the statement says, according to the agency.
"At the same time, Russia proposes keeping the transit price unchanged at $1.7, which is two times lower than the central European level."
Last Mod: 01 Ocak 2009, 12:38