Ukrainian gas imports increase as country enters heating season

Ukraine increased its natural gas imports to almost 13.3 billion cubic metres during the first 10 months of the year, 45.5 per cent higher than in the corresponding period of 2018, Interfax Ukraine has reported citing recent data from Ukrtransgaz, the transit and storage arm of Ukrainian national energy holding Naftogaz.

Between January and October, almost two-thirds of gas supplies (more than 8.5 billion cubic metres) came from Slovakia, a 51.3 per cent increase in imports from Slovakia compared with the same period of 2018. Hungary accounted for 26 per cent of supplies (close to 3.5 billion cubic metres), which is 19.1 more than in 2018 while Polish supplies, which mounted to 1.3 billion cubic metres, more than doubled in the reporting period.

Meantime, Ukrtransgaz also announced that the country’s natural gas stocks in its underground storage facilities (USFs) stood at 21.65 billion cubic metres as of November 9, 26 per cent higher than a year ago, with 69 per cent of the USFs capacity being filled.

Naftogaz is yet to negotiate a gas sales and transit agreement with Russian energy giant Gazprom. Last week, the Russian government said that ongoing judicial disputes between Naftogaz and Gazprom should also be settled in order to strike a gas deal.

The next round of the EU-mediated gas talks are due at the end of November.