Ukraine wants new discount on Russian gas: PM

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Ukraine will seek a new price for Russian gas as the current price remains too high even after Moscow gave Kiev a hefty discount, the country's Prime Minister Mykola Azarov said.

"We make it our aim to revise an agreement with Russia that is extremely unfavorouable for Ukraine and will repeatedly persuade our Russian colleagues of the need to do it," Azarov said at a government meeting.

He did not provide further details.

After President Viktor Yanukovych came to power earlier this year, Ukraine in April agreed a landmark deal to keep Russia's Black Sea Fleet based in Crimea at least until 2042 in exchange for a 30 percent discount on Russian gas exports to its neighbour.

Under the previous pro-Western administration in Ukraine, gas pricing had repeatedly been at the centre of disputes between the two countries.

In January 2009, haggling over gas issues led to energy supplies being turned off to several EU states in the midst of a bitterly cold winter.

© 2010 AFP

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