The system approach of the Government aimed at achieving energy independence and increasing the production of Ukrainian gas will afford to diversify coal supplies from the temporarily uncontrolled territories. This was stated by Prime Minister of Ukraine Volodymyr Groysman during a Government meeting on Tuesday.
"To hold modernization and abandon the [anthracite – ed.] coal, and to transfer, for instance, to that of the gas group which is extracted from the controlled areas, we need 3-5 years plus annual investments worth not less than UAH 15 billion. But this dependence is being phased out: we engage in replacing gas, we’ve began to produce Ukrainian gas, reduced scaling down of gas production in Ukraine. This means that our comprehensive approach will provide the opportunity, in particular to diversify the supply of coal", said the Head of Government.
In the issue of deliveries of anthracite coal from the temporarily uncontrolled territory of Ukraine it is necessary to distinguish between the issues of prevention of smuggling and the fight against the Ukrainian people, the Prime Minister accentuated.
"When we are talking about the blockade, I oppose vehemently all forms of smuggling. I agree that we must halt any movement of contrabands, not only by railway, but by other transport means through the demarcation line. But when it comes to the national security of our country, when we are talking about the fact that people must have heating and electricity in their homes, when we are talking about the fact that we are going through the heating season, ... now some Ukrainians want with their own hands to disrupt the heating season, to force phased blackouts in our country. This is unacceptable. We need to distinguish between fight against smuggling and the fight against the Ukrainian citizens", urged Volodymyr Groysman.
The Government has ensured high-level preparation for the heating season in our country, stressed the Prime Minister.
Volodymyr Groysman accentuated the Ukrainian steel industry depends on the supply of coal. This industry employs 300 thousand people.
"When we are talking about accelerated growth of the economy, which will allow us to raise pensions, it is vital to ensure the real economy working, without any halts. If Avdiyivka coke and chemical plant could have stopped as a result of attacks of the Russian mercenaries, these days it can stop because it lacks necessary raw materials to continue operation. Nobody has the right to speculate on that", stressed the Head of Government.
Moreover, he noted that decline in metallurgical exports would lead to the decline in Ukrainian trade, the reduction of foreign currency flows into the country, thereby undermining economic growth and delaying plans for other projects. It could also jeopardize the national currency.
In the structure of electricity production in Ukraine, more than 30% of power is generated from coal. Part of cities in Ukraine, such as Kyiv, Kharkiv, Cherkasy, Chernihiv produces heat for homes of Ukrainian citizens from coal.
Ukraine consumes such coal in the amount of 24 million tons per year. Anthracite coal is produced and mined from carriers situated on temporary uncontrolled territory, he noted.
"I believe that critical minimum of imports, a minimum amount that we extract from the domestic mines, can be safely used by us today", summed up the Head of Government.