Ukraine imported 9.183 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas for $1.801 billion in January-September 2019, including 1.481 bcm for $264.725 million in September, the State Statistics Service has said. The average price of gas imported by the country in September 2019 was $178.8 per 1,000 cubic meters, up 12.8% from $158.5 in August.
The main suppliers in January-September 2019 were companies from Switzerland with 4.05 bcm for $769.631 million, Germany – 2.827 bcm for $546.666 million, Czech Republic – 478.645 mcm for $91.23 million, Hungary – 462.888 mcm for $88.617 million, Poland – 342.778 mcm for $71.695 million, France – 356.617 mcm for $69.983 million, Austria – 267.171 mcm for $72.437 million, the U.K. – 154,599 mcm for $38.112 million, Luxembourg – 133.663 mcm for $32.256 million, Slovakia – 92.011 mcm for $16.215 million, Italy – 16.893 mcm for $3.487 million and Bulgaria – 1.4 mcm for $0.255 million.
Gas was not imported from Russia for the indicated period.
Ukraine imported 10.39 bcm for $3.12 billion in 2018.
Ukraine has accumulated significant reserves of natural gas in its underground gas storage facilities and coal in the warehouses of thermal power plants, which will allow passing this winter even in case of interruption in gas transit from January 1, 2020, Minister of Energy and Environment Protection of Ukraine Oleksiy Orzhel has said.
“This means that Ukraine this winter, even without transit, will not be cold,” he said on the air of ICTV Channel.
According to him, traditionally the greatest risks may arise in February-March, when stocks in underground gas storages become smaller. At the same time, stress tests conducted by the GTS operator indicate that even on the peak days of maximum consumption, the country will be able to satisfy the gas demand of Ukrainian consumers.
Orzhel also said that the government is developing mechanisms to prevent a sharp increase in gas prices in winter for consumers in the country.
As reported, as of November 16, 2019 Ukraine has 21.530 billion cubic meters in underground gas storage facilities, which exceeds the November 16, 2018 reserves by 27.1%, those on November 16, 2017 by 29.3%, and November 16, 2016 by 52.5%.
Coal reserves in the warehouses of thermal power plants of energy generating companies of Ukraine amount to 2.243 million tonnes, which is 33.6% more than last year’s reserves.
Nafta RV LLC, a subsidiary of Slovakia’s Nafta, has won an electronic auction to receive a license for developmet of the Vantazhkivske oil, gas field (Poltava region), according to information on the ProZorro.Sale platform. During the auction held last Wednesday, Nafta RV offered UAH 6.846 million for the license compared with Optima Resource private enterprise, which stopped at the starting price of UAH 6.795 million.
After registering the required documents, Nafta RV will receive a subsurface site for geological exploration and further research and development for a period of 20 years.
According to the materials of the auction, prospective gas resources of category C3 at the Vantazhkivske field were estimated at 3.091 billion cubic meters. It is recommended to drill two exploratory wells with a depth of 5,700 meters and 6,300 meters.
Nafta’s main shareholder is EPH holding of Czech businessman Daniel Křetínský.
The European side has proposed a new framework of work with the goal of signing a long-term contract for the supply of Russian gas through Ukraine after 2020, and the Ukrainian side hopes it will be signed before the end of this year, Minister of Energy and Environment Protection of Ukraine Oleksiy Orzhel has said.
“Today we’ve discussed with our European partners and accepted new proposals regarding the framework for working with a gas transit contract. We fully support these proposals and are grateful to our European partners for them,” Orzhel said following the fourth round of talks in the trilateral Ukraine-Russia-European Commission format in Brussels.
According to him, these proposals “are based on a ten-year contract, as well as on volumes of 60 billion cubic meters of stable volumes and 30 billion cubic meters of variable volumes of gas transportation by the gas transportation system.”
“There are additional points that we sign a transport agreement in accordance with European law,” the minister stressed.
At the same time, he assured that Ukraine has a clear position in order to guarantee stable supplies in the European direction.
“We hope that we will sign the agreement (on transit) before the end of the year and ensure the reliability of supplies to the European market,” he added.
Ukraine, the European Commission and the Russian Federation held technical consultations in Brussels on Tuesday to prepare for the next round of trilateral talks on gas transit after January 1, 2020.
NJSC Naftogaz Ukrainy said in a press release that during the consultations the parties discussed Ukraine’s progress in the implementation of the norms of the European legislation and the creation of independent gas transmission system operator.
In addition, the signing of an interconnection agreement between the operators of the gas transmission systems of Ukraine and the Russian Federation on standard European conditions was discussed, as well as the methodology of tariff formation for gas transportation, and other issues.
The next round of trilateral gas transit negotiations is expected to take place on October 28.
Ukraine boosted its natural gas stocks in underground gas storage facilities (UGS) by 23.28 billion cubic meters (bcm), to 21.026 bcm from April 4 to October 13, 2019, according to JSC Ukrtransgaz.
Interfax-Ukraine’s estimates show that this volume exceeds the inventory indicator as of October 13, 2018 by 26.4%, that as of October 13, 2017 by 25.5% and of October 13, 2016 by 42.7%.
Some 594.48 million cubic meters (mcm) was pumped into the country’s storage facilities on October 1 through October 13, which was 45.7 million cubic meters (mcm) per day on the average. The average daily amount in September was 72.5 mcm, it was 77.5 mcm in August, 74.4 mcm in July, 71.9 mcm in June, and 62.9 mcm in May.
Some 44.5 mcm of natural gas was pumped into the country’s UGS facilities on October 13, 2019, alone, while gas import totaled 60.4 mcm and domestic production was 54.9 mcm.
Earlier, Chairman of Executive Board of Naftogaz Ukrainy Andriy Kobolev said that the company planned to pump additional volumes of natural gas into the Ukrainian underground storage facilities in the event that Russia’s Gazprom ceases gas transit through the country in 2020.
As was reported, during the heating season from November 6, 2018, to April 4, 2019, Ukraine’s gas stocks in the UGS facilities shrank by 8.45 bcm (from 17.195 bcm to 8.745 bcm).
Ukrtransgaz, fully owned by Naftogaz Ukrainy, operates a system of gas pipelines and 12 underground gas storages in the country. Their total capacity is 31 bcm.