On Monday, NJSC Naftogaz of Ukraine, PJSC Ukrtransgaz, Snam S.p.A. (Italy), and Eustream a.s. (Slovakia) signed a memorandum of understanding on the joint assessment of cooperative opportunities for using and developing Ukraine's gas transportation system (GTS).
The memorandum was signed in Rome in the presence of the Minister of Energy and Coal Industry of Ukraine, Ihor Nasalyk, EU Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy, Miguel Arias Canete, and Italian Minister of Economic Development, Carlo Calenda, according to the Naftogaz official site.
“Among other things, the document is aimed at ensuring the long-term stability of natural gas transportation by Ukraine in accordance with the standards of European markets, the safe and efficient use of the Ukrainian GTS, as well as the transparent and non-discriminatory access to it by third parties in accordance with Ukrainian legislation,” the report says.
Within the framework of the memorandum, the companies will jointly assess the possibilities of using and strengthening the gas transportation system of Ukraine to make it more efficient, modern and competitive.
On Facebook, the press service of Naftogaz wrote that the document is “an official recognition of the interest of experienced European operators to cooperate in the management of the Ukrainian GTS.”
Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman commented on the signing of the memorandum on Facebook.
“This is a good sign of trust in Ukraine and of confidence in the importance of our GTS in Europe. We are confident that we will retain our position in the gas transportation market. And the cooperation that is being developed will allow us to use international experience and knowledge to transform Ukrainian operations to European standards. Other European operators expressed interest in cooperating with us and we plan to review proposals to find the best offer. The final decision regarding a possible partnership, according to the law “On the natural gas market,” will be approved by Ukrainian authorities,” he wrote.
On September 10, 2014 new Ukrainian legislation “On reforming the management system in a single Gas Transportation System” came into effect. According to him, the GTS and the underground gas storage system (UGS) remain as state property, but they can be transferred to the management of specially created companies. In these management companies, the Ukrainian government will receive a controlling stake, while the remaining shares may be purchased by European and American companies.
The government announced its plans to create companies to service the UGS and GTS, with the participation of American and European partners. The document removes restrictions on the lease or concession of gas mains and the UGS to an enterprise (or enterprises) on a paid basis without restricting the operations of the GTS and/or UGS.
Snam uses and develops the largest and most affordable pipeline system in the EU (over 40,000 km), the largest storage infrastructure in the EU (with a capacity of 19 billion cubic meters), and one of the first LNG terminals built in Europe. Snam's investments throughout Europe are aimed at integrating the networks of the European energy community and promoting gas as the key element of sustainable energy.
Eustream is the owner and operator of one of the largest transport systems in the EU. Eustream’s mission is to transport natural gas to Slovakia and to European markets through Slovakia. Eustream is a long-standing partner of the Ukrainian GTS, since it has both a direct and two-way communications with it.