World Economy

Russian Railways Refute Limits for Coal Transfer to Ukraine

Russian Railways Refute Limits for Coal Transfer to UkraineRussian Railways Refute Limits for Coal Transfer to Ukraine

The Russian Railroads Company (RZD) has not introduced limitations for transportation of coal to Ukraine, the company’s head Vladimir Yakunin told reporters on late Saturday.

Earlier, Ukrainian media, referring to the country’s Ministry of Energy and Coal Industry, reported “coal supplies from Russia to Ukraine were terminated on January 23,”Tass reported.

While answering a question whether RZD had limited transportation of coal Yakunin said: “Sure, not. We have not introduced any limitations.”

Cooperation between railroads of Russia and Ukraine should be free of political influence, Vladimir Yakunin said.

“I believe, we should avoid political statements and should care about safety and interests of our passengers and clients,” he said.

Several days earlier, Ukraine’s railroad company said it would stop working with the Russian railroad company if the latter cooperates with militia of the self-proclaimed republics in Ukraine’s war-torn south-east.

  Blokage Lifted

Last month, the Ukrainian Energy Ministry has announced that hundreds of wagons full of Russian coal which had been held up at the border in Ukraine’s east since last week, have now started entering the country.

“Coal deliveries to the thermal power station have been resumed. Wagons with about 50,000 tons of coal have already been sent to the thermal power units to meet the needs of the power system. This coal had been blocked at the border with Russia for several days,” a representative for Ukrainian Energy Ministry representative, Elena Mishchenko, wrote in a Facebook post.

The newly arrived coal is expected to help alleviate Ukraine’s mounting energy crisis, which suffered another blow after a deal to import South African coal collapsed earlier this week.

“Once we can resolve the issue of coal supplies we can achieve a lower price for electricity generation,” said Vladimir Demchyshyn, Ukraine’s Energy Minister said, at a press conference then. “We have power stations, but we can’t use them to their full capacity unless we have enough fuel to run them.”

Ukraine’s energy shortage was prompted when Russia cut off the country’s natural gas supply in June as a result of Ukraine’s outstanding $5.3 billion debt to Russian state-owned gas giant, Gazprom.