Russia began the talks process with Ukraine on continuing the gas transit after the elections in this country. Andriy Kobolev, the CEO of Naftogaz-Ukraine NJSC posted this on Facebook.
'Well, just as we expected, Moscow began the negotiations about extending gas transit immediately after the elections in Ukraine concluded', Kobolev stated.
He said that it was about Russia's wish to see Ukraine freeze without gas in winter, not about Moscow's need of gas transit or Gazprom's readiness to sign the contract on standard European conditions.
Kobolev expects that Russia will not be able to build and launch the bypassing gas pipelines before the end of the current contract with Ukraine.
According to him, the price of gas for Ukraine will depend on possible alternatives. The best guarantee of the fair price is a competiition between a number of available suppliers. 'They sell gas to Ukraine because it's profitable; but if someone raises the price too high, we just buy from others', Naftogaz-Ukraine CEO said.
He added that Vladimir Putin's approach is to isolate the customer, to become the only source of gas for him, and then do whatever he wants to. Thus, Russia will be able to dictate a huge price for gas, controlling external policy and demanding certain decisions in cases not related to gas supplies, Kobolev said.