EU warns of winter gas shortages after Ukraine talks fail
EU Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger warned Monday that the bloc may face gas shortages this winter after supply talks between Russia and Ukraine broke down.
"The next weeks will not be a problem, we will receive our gas volumes," Oettinger said in Vienna. But if Ukraine uses its reserves "then we would have a problem with a cold winter".
Two months into a violent feud that has provoked the worst East-West crisis since the Cold War, Ukraine on Sunday failed to broker an 11th-hour deal on future gas supplies with state-owned Russian giant Gazprom.
Compounding the Kiev government's problems as they confront an insurgency in the east, Gazprom on Monday began requiring Ukraine pay in advance for gas supplies and halted deliveries.
Gazprom stressed however that for now gas for European clients was flowing via Ukraine without interruptions, and Ukraine has vowed to continue transit shipments to the 28-nation European Union.
© 2014 AFP