Ukrainian Prime Minister Mykola Azarov has invited Russia to participate in a new gas production company that will be set up after the restructuring of Ukraine's state oil and gas firm Naftogaz. He told this to journalists in Kyiv on Monday.

"Naftogaz will be reformed, and there will be a totally transparent company engaged in gas production. We will place this company's shares on the stock exchanges. If Russia wants to participate in this company, then let it participate in it. This company will get the assets for the production of nearly one trillion cubic meters of gas," he said, according to UKRINFORM.

At the same time, Azarov expressed hope that the interests of strategic partnership and cooperation between Ukraine and Russia in many branches of the economy would be more important than the instant receipt by Russia of huge profit under the disadvantageous gas agreements of 2009.

"We are open to Russian investment. Long-term strategic interests should be more important than the instant aspect linked to gas disagreements. I truly believe in it," he said.

Earlier, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov said that it was necessary to resign gas contracts with Russia because of the restructuring of Naftogaz, which he said will cease to exist as an economic entity.

A letter was also sent to the Russian government with the request to return to the intergovernmental agreement of 2004, where the annual volume of gas supply, transit conditions and the price are determined by a special intergovernmental protocol.

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