Minister of Energy and Environmental Protection of Ukraine Oleksiy Orzhel told that this quarter the heating rates in the utility bills will be reduced - the price of gas for consumers will decrease further in February, as a result of the signing of an agreement on gas transit and stabilization of the situation on the Ukrainian and European markets.
"In February, March, in summer - we will have a record low gas price as we have managed to settle the situation on the gas market", stressed Oleksiy Orzhel.
As a reminder, in January 2020, the price of gas is 25% lower than in January 2019. Consumers paid UAH 5,580 per thousand cubic meters with VAT excluding the cost of transportation of gas.
"This situation has proved possible due to the signing of the agreement on gas transit," explained Oleksiy Orzhel. "I can tell you more, I was sitting next to the traders and they said that they were looking whether Ukraine would sign the deal or not. In case the deal hadn’t been signed, they would have run into money - billions of dollars, in case of having been signed - they would lose a great deal of money. They didn't get money, but that made it possible to reduce prices for our Ukrainian citizens."
The Minister also added that Government wants to spend the money received following a ruling of the Arbitration Institute of the Stockholm Chamber of Commerce to improve road network for Ukrainians, to increase access to the hospitals and improve the quality of healthcare services provided.
"Moreover, reducing gas prices has provided us with an opportunity to review distribution tariffs that have not been revised for long," the Minister added. "This has been done to upgrade the infrastructure because it is also a factor affecting whether Ukrainians will have a chance to get high-quality gas delivered to their homes."
Apart from that, Oleksiy Orzhel drew attention to the importance of ensuring the independence of the National Energy and Utilities Regulatory Commission (NEURC). "It is critical for us to guarantee the National Regulator is independent of influence. Meanwhile, it must exercise control over the monopolists. Therefore, it is essential to establish a clear economically justified tariff," the Minister summarized.