Experts say EU sanctions undermine Russia-Ukraine gas deal
Marat Terterov is the founder of the Brussels Energy Club and is one of Europe's leading experts on energy. He says the sanctions being imposed by the EU on Russia could still potentially lead to an energy crisis in the 28-member bloc this winter even though the bloc has brokered a new gas deal between Moscow and Kiev. Most of the EU's gas supply from Russia travels through Ukraine and Terterov says this raises some very serious questions.
Ukraine is almost bankrupt and is unable to pay its gas bills to Russia without help from the EU. As part of a new short-term gas deal, the EU is guaranteeing a payment to Moscow of 4.6 billion dollars. Kiev will pay Moscow 378 dollars per 1,000 cubic meters of gas until the end of this year. Some experts say Russia has displayed a great deal of diplomacy with the EU and Ukraine, given that the West has imposed sanctions on Moscow because of the crisis in eastern Ukraine. Over 300 million EU citizens depend on Russian gas to heat their homes. Most of the bloc's 450 billion cubic meters of gas imports each year come from Russia. Many experts say it is time for the EU to lift its sanctions against Moscow and try diplomacy instead.