"We understand quite well that without the consent of the Russian side and without the participation of the European Union, the issue of modernizing our gas transport system and its existence has no prospects," the prime minister said, according to the information and communications department of the Cabinet of Ministers' secretariat.
The prime minister said that it was currently impossible to reach a tripartite agreement - between Ukraine, Russia and the EU. "We are holding talks. I cannot say that we have made some progress. But I also cannot say that they the talks have been deadlocked," he said.
Azarov also said that Ukraine intended to invest in the development of its own oil and gas complex. In particular, this year it is planned to build a platform for the drilling of wells on the shelf and to develop non-traditional fields, he said. "Our oil and gas complex has prospects, and the government will seriously deal with its development," he said.
The prime minister also said that negotiations on the creation of a joint venture between Ukraine and Russia, which will deal with gas issues, were at the stage of assessing the assets, in particular, the issue of making contributions to the statutory fund of the joint venture.
"The question arose: what assets will be included in the joint venture. If these are the assets that will allow us to have the necessary volumes of gas, then we are 'for.' But if these fields require the enormous investments of financial resources with unclear transportation schemes, then we are 'against,'" the prime minister said.
Azarov said that the question of the European Union's participation in the creation of such a joint venture was extremely important, because, in his opinion, it is necessary to have concrete guarantees about the amount of gas that will be produced by Russia, transported by Ukraine and consumed by the European Union.
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