The construction of the gas pipeline Nord Stream 2 doesn’t mean that Gazprom will no more use Ukrainian pipelines, the Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman, Anastasia Fedorova, has said. The Ukrainian pipelines could be used further if Kiev offered ‘competitive’ transit fees and removed such risks as lawsuits against Gazprom, according to Fedorova’s statement on the Russian foreign ministry’s website.
Ukraine fears that Russia may stop using its pipelines for pumping gas to the EU after launching Nord Stream 2. What’s more, the current gas transit contract expires in January 2019. Ukraine has sided with the US in opposing Nord Stream 2, while the EU favors the project. At the same time, Ukraine has been insisting that Russia pay more for using Ukraine’s pipelines.
On May 31, the Stockholm arbitration court in an interim ruling rejected Gazprom’s claims over a take-or-pay clause in the 10-year gas supply contract, saying that Gazprom should revise contract prices in line with market conditions since 2014. The court has yet to rule on Naftogaz’s claims to Gazprom over the gas transit contract and transit fees. Ukraine has not been buying gas from Gazprom since November 2015, relying on imports from the EU and domestic gas production, which grew by 3% y/y in H1’2017.