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EU rules out talks on Russian gas transit via Ukraine

EU rules out talks on Russian gas transit via Ukraine Photo: European Commissioner for Energy Kadri Simson (Getty Images)

The European Commission has no plans to engage in negotiations with Russia for the continuation of Russian gas transit to European countries through Ukraine, says European Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson.

"I have been very clear and I have repeatedly confirmed the message to our Ukrainian counterparts that the European Commission will not engage with Russia in the way it did five years ago when the trilateral gas transit agreement was agreed on. On the contrary, according to our RePowerEU plan, we have to get rid of Russian gas at the latest in 2027," says Simson.

According to her, the European Commission is working intensively to "provide landlocked countries with alternative supply routes and alternative suppliers, and we are supporting Ukraine so that Ukraine can be better integrated with the EU energy market."

The European Commissioner noted that the main topic for discussion by European government officials at today's meeting will be gas and security of supply.

"We are leaving behind - successfully - another heating season, and that means that it's now time to start preparing for the next winter. That means that we will discuss the gas market outlook, also the impact of the end of Russian gas transit via Ukraine," added Simson.

She expressed hope that the ministers would also be able to agree on the continuation of gas-saving measures and ways to further reduce the volume of exports of Russian liquefied gas to European countries.

Gas transit

Under a five-year transit agreement between Moscow and Kyiv signed in 2019, Russia exports gas to Europe via Ukraine and pays for the use of the pipeline network.

Ukraine has repeatedly stated that it will not enter into negotiations with Russia regarding the extension of the contract.

Meanwhile, in Ukraine, it is not excluded that the companies of the EU countries will be able to order the transit capacities of the Ukrainian GTS for Russian gas.

Today, Prime Minister of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal said that Kyiv is currently engaged in negotiations with European countries regarding the transit of gas from Russian territory after 2024. In case no agreement is reached, the gas transportation system will be utilized for Ukraine's needs.