Ukraine needs to import approximately 3.5 million tonnes of thermal coal during the coming heating season, Energy Minister Herman Haluschenko has said.
“Additionally, it is needed to import about 3.5 million tonnes during the heating season in accordance with the coal accumulation schedule,” the minister said in an exclusive interview with Interfax-Ukraine.
At the same time, he noted that generating companies – both DTEK and Centrenergo – have begun to conclude contracts for coal imports.
According him, the price of electricity in the market already makes it possible “to calmly buy coal, produce [electricity], sell and earn money.”
“We expect that we will stabilize the situation with coal and will calmly pass the autumn-winter period,” the minister said.
At the same time, he noted that in the heating season of this year, the Ministry of Energy also expects “certain achievements” – the NPP operation with at least 14 units out of 15 operating, as well as, if necessary, especially in December-January, connection of the 15th atomic block to the system. According to his forecasts, gas reserves in underground storage facilities will reach 19.5 billion cubic meters at the beginning of the autumn-winter period.
According to presidential decree 452/2021, promulgated on Monday, which approved the decision of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) dated July 30, 2021 on measures to neutralize threats in the energy sector, the Cabinet of Ministers must ensure the accumulation of natural gas, reserve fuels and coal by October 31 of this year for the smooth operation of the fuel and energy complex during the heating period 2021/2022, as well as the priority of providing open wagons for shipment of coal products by rail in accordance with the requests of coal enterprises – mines and processing plants. Also, the government needs to ensure the completion of the implementation of measures regarding the readiness of the fuel and energy complex to work in a special period and make appropriate decisions.