22 Mar 2010 17:24

Kyiv determined to get Kazakh oil transit restarted

KYIV. March 22 (Interfax) - Ukraine will do all it can to help restore the transit of Kazakh oil, which has been hit by infrastructural problems, First Deputy Prime Minister Andriy Klyuev said.

"We all know that the country [Kazakhstan] actually lost its roads during the winter. The moment the snow disappears we must launch a large-scale repair campaign. This has to do with our transit capabilities on the one hand, and with citizens' lives and health on the other," Klyuyev told Interfax on Monday.

"The finance and economics ministries have been instructed to stabilize the financial situation in the Ukravtodor state road construction company, which is overloaded with credit obligations, or building and repairing roads will be a problem," he said.

The list of priorities also includes optimization of tariffs for transit shipments in order to increase the turnover of goods across Ukraine, he added.

Klyuev also said that Ukraine must invest in infrastructure projects, including in projects intended to liven up the domestic market. Therefore, budget amendments are being prepared related to the construction and repairs of the bridges across the Dnieper to Kyiv and Zaporizhzhya, which are in critical condition for the most part, he said.

Besides that, Ukraine must regain Kazakh oil transit via the Druzhba pipeline, lost by the previous government, he said.

Klyuev instructed the Fuel and Energy Ministry to analyze the situation without delay and find out why the Kazakh operator KazTransOil refused to pump crude via the southern branch of the Druzhba pipeline in early February.