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Glimmers of promise in Ukrainian gas, for now

Don't expect a new Gazprom-Naftogaz crisis out this year. At least that's the message from Kiev

So confident is Ukraine with its gas balance that it will not be buying Russian gas, even at Gazprom's discounted price of $212 per 1,000 cubic metres (/000), Arseniy Yatsenyuk, the country's prime minister, said on 10 January. Instead, it will buy Russian gas more cheaply - at about $200/000 cm - through pipelines from Europe. The country's natural gas stocks of 14bn cm are 2.3bn cm higher than a year ago, providing a decent cushion. Ukraine's gas sector does indeed look stronger and better prepared this year. Alongside its burgeoning stocks and cheaper gas from reversed European supply, a rise in domestic household tariffs is helping state firm Naftogaz minimise its losses. Most important

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