Despite the gas controversy between Ukraine and Russia, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov is convinced that in future the countries will be able to restore a mutually beneficial partnership in all sectors of the economy, the Information-Analytical Bulletin of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine informs.

Prime Minister said that because of the gas contract that was signed back in 2009 with inflated prices, Ukraine overpaid to Russia almost 20 billion USD. To avoid these costs, the Ukrainian government has constantly insisted on reviewing existing gas agreements between NAK Naftogaz of Ukraine and OAO Gazprom. 

"We have tried and will continue to make every effort to reach an agreement with Russia on revising this agreement," Azarov said. 

The Cabinet is also implementing a number of programs aimed to reduce consumption of expensive imported energy resources in the country, including natural gas, and to diversify the sources of its supply. 

First of all, this is due to the fact that the prices of OAO Gazprom for Ukraine are considerably higher than those for most of European countries. This is despite the fact that Ukraine is one of the largest Russian gas consumers, is its closest neighbor and buys large amounts of gas in spring and summer. All this infers that it is more advantageous for Ukraine to buy gas in Europe than in Russia. 

In fact, it is more profitable for Ukraine to buy gas on the European gas spot market where the payment is made immediately. For Ukraine, with its largest natural gas storage facilities located on its western borders, it is profitable to buy most of its gas in Europe in the spring and summer at spot prices, as they are much lower than those for fixed-term contracts. 

The government envisions that in 2013 Ukraine will import 27.3 billion cubic meters of natural gas. The gas supply from Gazprom will amount to 18 billion cubic meters, from Ostchem (Cyprus) — 8 billion cubic meters and from RWE Supply & Trading GmbH (Germany) 1.3 billion cubic meters. 

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