They did not manage to celebrate the “victory” over Gazprom in the Stockholm Arbitration, as suddenly they had to introduce a restriction on gas consumption in the country.
Energy Minister Igor Nasalik reassured that these restrictions have been introduced for only five days, but educational institutions and kindergartens have already been recommended to close for a week, or even two, and industri-al enterprises – urgently need to review gas consumption. And then there’s the new cyclone at the threshold, which threatens to bring another sharp drop in temperature, which can cause a gas deficit of about 10 million cubic meters per day.
These missing 10 million cubic meters Ukraine was going to buy from the “aggressor country”, but on March 2 this year Gazprom has launched a procedure for the extension of the contracts with Naftogaz. Alexei Miller, chairman of the Russian company, explained this by saying that “the Stock-holm arbitration decision on gas supply and transit contracts was asymmetric and violated the balance of interests of the parties under contracts.” “The arbi-trators argued their decision with a sharp deterioration in the state of the Ukrainian economy. We are categorically opposed to Ukraine’s economic problems being solved at our expense. In such a situation, the continuation of contracts for Gazprom is economically unsuitable and unprofitable, “Miller said.
Recall that on February 28, the dispute between Gazprom and Naftogaz lasted for several years in the Stockholm Arbitration Court ended. According to the court decision, Gazprom must pay Naftogaz $ 4.63 billion “for the shortage of agreed volumes of gas for transit.” However, after offsetting coun-terclaims, Gazprom’s debt was reduced to $ 2.56 billion.
The Ukrainian side even tried to present the termination of the gas sup-ply to the country as another “victory”. “They … did not fulfill their obliga-tions under the contract, it automatically means that they will not be able to demand more from us this year to take or pay (” take or pay “). These actions will cost Gazprom many political problems in Europe and millions of losses, “Andrei Kobolev, the head of Naftogaz, said on the air of one of the Ukrainian TV channels.
However, while problems have appeared only in Ukraine. Naftogaz Ukraine on its page in the social network Facebook has published an appeal to the citizens of the country to start saving gas, for which it is proposed to re-duce the temperature in the batteries. “We need to hold out only for three or four days, until the cold passes. Who has a gas boiler, reduce the temperature in the room by one degree in the day and two degrees at night. This will reduce the need for gas by 8-9%, “- says the appeal. “We are working with local au-thorities to ensure that communal heat engineers in the coming days do the same for houses with centralized heating,” – said in “Naftogaz.” That is, the ac-tion “Crumple!” It Is not even voluntary, because multi-apartment buildings “cool” forcibly. It was felt by millions of Ukrainians.
Appeal of “Naftogaz” supported and Poroshenko. “This is an important initiative that encourages Ukrainians to rally against another provocation by the Kremlin … Joining this initiative personally, I also call on all state institu-tions to reduce the temperature in the premises as much as possible. Also, I ask citizens to heat up only one degree for a few days, or to avoid the heat in houses as much as possible, “wrote Pyotr Alekseevich on his Facebook page.
It turns out just a fantastic paradox. Three years to tell that Russian gas is not needed for Ukraine, and today to disconnect schools and kindergartens from heating, because Russia does not give gas.
Even in the crisis years of 2006 and 2009, no one screwed the valves to the public. Today, gas in Ukraine has turned into a weapon of internal and ex-ternal use. Due to a shortage of 10-20 million cubic meters these pitiful calls to the society “let’s save gas” sound. But in addition to this, Peter Alekseevich plays an anti-Russian card. Inside Ukraine, he says that “Putin is wicked and freezes Ukrainians. In Europe, he says that “Russia provokes Ukraine to cut off the gas veil.” But in Europe today it is also cold and Europeans against this background and potentially possible interruptions with gas once again con-vince themselves that with transit through Ukraine, not everything is in order.
The “charm” of the Kiev authorities and “Naftogaz” litigation in Stock-holm led to the fact that the transit potential of Ukraine can be reduced to zero. Both the Nord Stream and the Turkish Stream are evidence of this. Naftogaz persistently avoids voicing one thing – what will be the future fate of gas transit through Ukraine, and we are talking about the prospect of 2020-2050, and not about today. After all, the contract with Gazprom became history back in 2009, when it was signed. And already then, since 2009, it was necessary to start working either on a new contract with Russia, or on new transit possibili-ties of Ukraine. And our authorities together with Naftogaz did not think of anything better than how to continue the practice of former President Yanu-kovych – to think that we can sit out in one place and wait for what the part-ners from the EU will do for Ukraine.
Ukrainian analysts agree on one thing: the current situation with a lack of gas is a consequence of the transition to gas purchases in Europe on short-term contracts. It looked beautiful for the authorities – Ukraine decided to buy gas directly from Russia. The fact that it brought financial losses, tried not to be discusses. But it’s not even about money. These supplies fell apart as soon as it got colder in Europe and the gas expenses increased.
Meanwhile, the action “Tie on!” Is gaining momentum in social net-works. However, too few Ukrainians supported the appeals of Naftogaz and the president and agreed to freeze. People are shocked by the fact that the “en-ergy independence of Ukraine”, which Poroshenko constantly broadcasted, in fact proved to be very much even an addiction.
In social networks, they reacted violently to the events. Journalist Tasha So-korova writes that the gas is not going to be screwed: “Who would fix the gas to Pedro? To make him feeling the Ukrainian Maldives at 18 below zero at night without heating. ”
Ukrainians joke, and Europe is not up to jokes, there are already serious-ly worried about interruptions in transit supplies of gas through Ukraine. By the way, in Europe, confirmed that Russia does not violate the terms of con-tracts for the supply of gas to Europeans. “All the existing obligations for the supply and transit of gas to the European Union are observed,” the European Commission said.
And the Ukrainian authorities amuse themselves with the idea that Gaz-prom has no right to terminate the contract with Kiev unilaterally.

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