A DROP IN THE BUCKET
The European Union and Ukraine have agreed on terms to boost the flow of natural gas from the 28-nation bloc to the former Soviet state, Slovak pipeline operator Eustream said late Saturday.
"Representatives of Eustream and [Ukrainian pipeline operator] Ukrtransgaz will sign the document on Monday," Eustream said in a statement.
The two sides agreed that the fastest and least legally cumbersome way to provide Ukraine with a third EU-based gas delivery route--it already has gas-flow agreements with Hungary and Poland--is to use the pipeline between Vojany and Uzhgorod, an underutilized secondary pipe on Slovakia's eastern border.
The deal would mark Ukraine's third significant energy agreement with the West since a pro-European caretaker government came to power earlier following massive protests in Kiev.
To reduce dependence on Russia, its major trade partner, Ukraine earlier this month extended a nuclear-fuel supply contract with Pennsylvania-based Westinghouse Electric Co. until 2020 and renewed a gas-supply contract with German utility RWE AG.
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Iran exported over 5 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas during the first five months of the current Iranian calendar year (March 21-August 22), Dispatching director of National Iranian Gas Company (NIGC) announced.
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