UKRAINE is set to sign a gas deal with Slovakia today, as it looks to secure alternative supplies amid ongoing tensions with Russia.
Russia’s Gazprom provides Ukraine with gas, but it has almost doubled its prices after Moscow claimed sovereignty over Crimea last month.
Slovak gas company Eustream said that a reverse-flow agreement to ship limited gas volumes to Ukraine “is at the moment the best possible solution, from the technical, time and legal nature”.
The Slovak Economy Ministry and the Ukrainian Energy Ministry have said they expect the pact to be signed in Bratislava today.
Russia’s seizure of Crimea from Ukraine triggered an international crisis, resulting in EU and US sanctions and threatening Europe’s energy security. The continent gets one third of its gas from Russia, much of it via Ukraine.
Ukraine needs more gas than Slovakia is offering if Russia cuts off supplies. But Slovakia is wary of breaching contracts with Gazprom.