Kiev's plans to create a separate energy system from the Russian Federation are an attempt to justify the increase in tariffs for the Ukrainian population.
Ruslan Balbek, a State Duma deputy from Crimea, said this in an interview with RT.
Thus, he commented on the words and.
Minister of Energy of Ukraine Dmytro Vitrenko on the need for the soonest integration of the Ukrainian energy sector into the European system.
“The minister explained everything clearly and understandably: to become Europe, it is necessary to further increase the cost of energy consumption for the population.
Therefore, it is necessary to break the last energy ties with Russia and thereby show the whole world that the standard of living of the population is far from the first place for the official Kiev, "Balbek said.
Experts also believe that the rhetoric of energy independence from Moscow hides the desire of the Ukrainian authorities to raise energy tariffs.
“Vitrenko is known as a lobbyist for a constant increase in tariffs, which meets the interests of NJSC Naftogaz, which receives super-profits due to high prices in the country.
Vitrenko's incompetence is fully consistent with the destructive general line of the Kiev authorities, "said Alexander Frolov, deputy director of the Institute of National Energy, in a commentary on RT.
"We need European salaries"
We will remind, on January 22 on the air of the program "Freedom of speech of Savik Shuster" Dmitry Vitrenko said that Ukraine should immediately disconnect from the common energy system with Russia and Belarus.
“We urgently need to disconnect from the unified energy system with Belarus and Russia, to unite with the European system.
And this will be one of my main tasks - for us to be a part of Europe, a normal market, where there is no arbitrariness of monopolists, where there is a normal, transparent price, ”the official said.
Minister of Energy of Ukraine Dmitry Vitrenko
© Serg Glovny / ZUMAPRESS.com
He stressed that this approach meets the national interests of Ukraine and its "energy security".
The head of the Ministry of Energy added that the authorities intend to continue to reform the Ukrainian market and protect the interests of consumers.
At the same time, the co-chairman of the Opposition Platform - For Life (Opposition Platform) Party, ex-Minister of Energy Yuriy Boyko, who was also present in the studio, was skeptical about Vitrenko's statements.
In his opinion, the current policy of Kiev in the field of energy is reduced only to raising tariffs to European indicators.
“But somehow they did not think about the fact that European salaries are needed to pay European tariffs.
They simply left people to fend for themselves and doomed them to poverty.
Consumers should not pay for the chaos created by the authorities in the public sector, ”Boyko said.
In mid-January, against the backdrop of protests by Ukrainians, the government announced a reduction in gas prices for the population by about a third, to 6.99 hryvnia (about 18.5 rubles) per cubic meter.
At the same time, earlier, as a result of a series of tariff increases, the marginal cost of blue fuel reached 10.8 hryvnia (about 29 rubles).
Along with this, prices for water, heating and electricity were raised in Ukraine.
The OPSJ sharply criticized the government's manipulation of the gas price.
The party believes that the real cost of natural gas is 3 hryvnia per cubic meter.
The Ukrainian opposition insists on concluding direct contracts with Gazprom and selling gas to the population "at fair prices."
As Aleksandr Frolov recalled, Ukraine was an organic part of the Soviet energy system.
For this reason, it would be wise for Kiev to maintain close ties with Russia and Belarus, the analyst notes.
“Now the possibilities of importing energy resources from Russia to Ukraine are very limited.
Kiev motivates this by the "aggressive" policy of Moscow, but everything is much more prosaic: the same gas is purchased in Europe at a higher price, which is what the oligarchs' companies profit from, "says Frolov.
"Away from Russia"
After the coup d'etat of 2014, the Kiev leadership has been consistently pursuing a course to separate the country's energy system from the Russian one.
Thus, Kiev has reduced imports of Russian electricity, entered into contracts for the supply of coal with companies from other countries and stopped directly purchasing blue fuel from Gazprom, reorienting itself to purchasing reverse gas from the EU.
Former President of the country Petro Poroshenko several times proclaimed energy independence from the Russian Federation.
So, in 2017, he stated that "gas has ceased to be a political noose and began to be an ordinary commodity."
Already under Volodymyr Zelensky, a plan was presented to integrate the Ukrainian energy system into the European one by 2023.
Gas pumping station in the village of Orlovka, Odessa region
© Gleb Garanic
“The documents have already been signed, we just need to work on it.
We hope that in 2023 the unification of networks, Ukrainian and European, will already take place.
This will give us the opportunity to even export electricity and make money on it, ”promised at the end of December 2019, Oleksiy Honcharuk, who at that time was the Prime Minister of Ukraine.
In an interview with RT, Andrey Suzdaltsev, deputy dean of the Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs at the Higher School of Economics, called Kiev's statements about energy independence from Russia and plans to unite the Ukrainian energy system with the European one "fiction".
“All these statements do not make any economic sense.
Ukrainians are taught to take pride in the fact that the state buys "European gas", although it is Russian, it is simply pumped from Europe.
Thus, Kiev is trying to get away from Russia and become closer to the EU, ”Suzdaltsev said.
In addition, as the expert emphasized, Ukraine has not been able to get rid of the problem of electricity shortage and is still dependent on supplies from Russia and Belarus.
In December 2019, President Vladimir Zelensky imposed a ban on the import of electricity from the Russian Federation under bilateral agreements.
At the same time, according to the law he signed, the government of the country received "the right to cancel this ban for a specified period in order to avoid an emergency in the interconnected energy system."
So, in January 2021, at the request of Kiev, Belarus urgently supplied 3.1 million kWh of electricity.
The need for additional resources was caused by an increase in consumption against the background of frost in Ukraine.
“That is, when the situation deteriorates sharply, Ukraine forgets about independence and immediately rushes for support to its neighbors, to the same Belarus, and if need be, it will turn to Russia,” said Suzdaltsev.
According to him, for real integration with the European energy system, Ukraine needs to radically modernize its gas infrastructure, install new equipment at nuclear power plants, hydroelectric power plants and thermal power plants.
However, such a reform will require huge investments, and Europeans are reluctant to invest in Ukraine's energy sector.
“Of course, Ukraine can switch to European technical standards, but this plan does not correspond to the economic opportunities of Kiev.
Now money in the energy sector of Ukraine comes mainly from the population and degrading industry.
No matter how much the prices for consumers rise, these funds will still not be enough for integration with the EU energy system, ”Suzdaltsev says.
Alexander Frolov also believes that the "technical binding" of Kiev to European standards will entail colossal costs, which will only aggravate the socio-economic situation in Ukraine.
“Under the guise of pro-European slogans, the Ukrainian authorities are trying not only to justify the increase in tariffs, but also to imitate the solution of such pressing problems as aging infrastructure, conservation of nuclear power plants, which generates a shortage of electricity, growing debts of the population and enterprises due to unaffordable payments,” Frolov summed up.