High gas prices, tariffs shifted to local govts bring situation with heating closer to critical – Klitschko
Kyiv's heating infrastructure is technically ready for the beginning of the heating season, but high gas prices and tariffs shifted to local governments make the situation close to critical, Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko said during a meeting of Kyiv City State Administration.
"We are ready for technical reasons. There are other challenges that make the situation close to critical, namely high gas prices, tariffs shifted to local government, the lack of a legal framework to ensure the heat supply companies' operation," Klitschko said on Thursday.
He said the Ukrainian Cities Association offered the central government specific solutions that would allow to start supplying heat and hot water to the population on time. Klitschko said he appealed to Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal to ask the government to fix the price of natural gas for budgetary institutions until the end of the heating season at UAH 11.2 per cubic meter instead of the market price of UAH 35.
"Meanwhile, NJSC Naftogaz Ukrainy should immediately exclude the discriminatory norms of gas supply agreements. In turn, local budgets should be paid for the difference in tariffs of previous years and compensation for the future should be provided in order to keep tariffs for heat and hot water for the population at the previous heating season's level," the mayor said in the statement.
The mayor said the Kyivteploenergo communal enterprise ensured the proper technical preparation of the city economy for the heating season. "But today, I emphasize again, we are waiting for the government to answer the key question: what will be the mechanism of compensation for local budgets so that we cannot increase the tariff for the population. Therefore, the tariff has not yet been approved," Klitschko said.