- Sputnik International, 1920
The latest news and stories from Russia. Stay tuned for updates and breaking news on defense, politics, economy and more.

Putin Recalls How Ukraine Cut Off Gas Supplies to EU in 2008 Over Price Row

© Sputnik / Sergey Guneev / Go to the mediabankRussian President Vladimir Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin  - Sputnik International, 1920, 13.11.2021
A gas crisis that left Europe without sufficient natural gas supplies for nearly two weeks erupted under the Viktor Yushchenko administration in Ukraine, which sabotaged agreements with Gazprom with the alleged goal of keeping in place the middleman-company RosUkrEnergo, controlled by Ukrainian oligarchs.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has recalled that even prior to the threats of his Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko, there were precedents where transit countries blocked Russian gas supplies to Europe. He namely brought up a gas crisis that unfolded in 2008 and 2009 between Russia and Ukraine, resulting, at one point, in a cessation of supplies to the EU.
Putin recalled that the two countries were stuck in "endless disputes" over the gas price and could not come to an agreement for a long time. It all led to Kiev eventually stopping Russian gas supplies to Europe through its territory.
"It got to the point that Ukraine blocked our gas, which is intended for consumers in Europe. As experts say, [they] basically turned the valve, simply cut off Russian gas to Europe".
President Vladimir Putin speaking at the Russian Energy Week Forum in Moscow, 13 October 2021. - Sputnik International
Vladimir Putin
Russian President
Recently, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko threatened to do the same with another pipeline – Yamal-Europe – if the EU proceeds with slapping his country with more economic sanctions. Brussels threatened Minsk with new economic measures after Warsaw and several other states baselessly accused Belarus of facilitating the migrant crisis on its border with Poland.
Putin, however, expressed hope that Lukashenko would not proceed to go through with his threat. The Russian president said that his Belarusian counterpart never discussed the move with him and promised to talk to Lukashenko about it. At the same time, Putin suggested that the Belarusian president could have issued the threat in the heat of the moment.

Ukrainian Government Stops Gas Transit Amid Row With Russia

The crisis that Putin recalled started back in 2008, when the Ukrainian government refused to sign an agreement with Russia's Gazprom on a new gas price for 2009, which was substantially lower than the market one in Europe. At the same time, RosUkrEnergo, which was partially controlled by Ukrainian oligarchs and served as a middleman in Russia-Ukraine gas sales, racked up $2.4 billion in debt to Gazprom, purportedly due to corruption.
Amid the failure to reach an agreement in the talks, Gazprom and Moscow threatened in December to cut gas supplies to Ukraine unless it would repay the entire debt and agree to buy the blue fuel at European prices. After the threat was implemented in January 2009, Ukraine responded by siphoning a portion of the Russian gas heading to Europe through its territory. This led to a full stop of transit on 7 January. Kiev repeatedly denied it stole any gas.
FILE PHOTO: Recording artist Kanye West performs during the closing ceremony for the 2015 Pan Am Games at Pan Am Ceremonies Venue in Toronto, Canada, July 26, 2015.  - Sputnik International, 1920, 13.11.2021
Ye Compares Himself to Young Putin, Here's Why
The two countries eventually agreed on new prices for transit and gas for Ukraine itself at $232 per thousand cubic metres. While the transit to Europe was supposed to resume on 13 January, due to the actions of the Ukrainian authorities and state gas company Naftogaz, this only happened on 19 January 2009, thus leaving European countries without a significant portion of Russian gas supplies for almost three weeks. The incident prompted Moscow to boost the construction of alternative pipelines that could serve as backups, including Nord Stream.
To participate in the discussion
log in or register
Заголовок открываемого материала