Ukraine has no legal possibility to amend the existing gas contracts with Russia,  Prime Minister Mykola Azarov said this during the signing of a memorandum between the Cabinet of Ministers and the Ukrainian League of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (ULIE).

"We can not get out of the current contracts without huge losses. Everything depends on the goodwill of Russia: should they agree with us - so the contracts will be reviewed," Azarov said, according to UKRINFORM.

Azarov reiterated that difficult negotiations with Russia are in progress, as the contracts for gas supplies to Ukraine are 'shackling'.

On 19 January, 2009 Gazprom and Naftogaz of Ukraine signed a contract on gas supplies in 2009-2019 on the basis of direct economic relations, bypassing middlemen. The cost of gas is calculated quarterly on the basis of the base price at USD 450 per 1,000 cu. m, which is the highest in Europe.

In addition, Ukraine pledged to pay penalties in case of the purchase of less gas than contracted.

Ukraine is currently seeking revision of the gas purchase terms toward lowering the price of gas.

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