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Economy Minister visits Ukraine, gets assurances of continued gas flow
20 Aug 2014 Flash News
SLOVAK Economy Minister Pavol Pavlis visited Ukraine on August 19 and held talks with his counterpart Yuriy Prodan in Kiev.
Pavlis learnt that Ukraine’s new so-called “sanctions law” won’t be used to the detriment of Slovakia, with gas flows from Russia to be provided by Ukraine as they have been until now. “This is an important piece of news for us, one that we want to take back home,” Pavlis said in Kiev, as quoted by the TASR newswire.
While gas supplies from Russia through Ukraine have been the subject of disputes for a long time, similar problems with oil are not expected. The issue of oil was only a marginal topic in the talks.
If Slovak companies were to acquire ownership shares in Ukrainian companies operating gas pipelines, that would be their own private initiative, Pavlis further said. “The [Slovak] state certainly won’t become engaged in it. This is up to private companies,” he said. Privatisation was among the issues discussed by Pavlis and Prodan. “I’ve given the minister [Prodan] the chance to learn a lesson from our negative experience with privatisations,” said Pavlis.
After the talks, Pavlis laid wreaths at a memorial to the victims of the recent protests on Kiev’s Independence Square. Both officials are set to meet again in Vojany, Slovakia, on September 2, when the reverse-flow pipeline is scheduled to begin running at full capacity.
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