To strengthen its economy Ukraine needs economically-grounded natural gas prices - PM

To strengthen its economy Ukraine needs economically-grounded natural gas prices - PMTo strengthen its economy, Ukraine will have to take a number of unpopular measures, including setting economically-grounded prices for [natural] gas, as was agreed with the International Monetary Fund, Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman has said.

"There are many different unpopular decisions, which need to be taken, in particular, the adoption of economically grounded prices of gas. I understand that this needs to be decided. And we're now working on it, to make it public, in an open and understandable way," he said at a briefing on Wednesday.

He said that the liabilities were undertaken by Ukraine as part of cooperation with the IMF and they are in line with the national interests.

"Where there is a loop for underpriced gas, there is billions worth of fraud, which is bad for Ukrainian society. Have no doubt that lowered gas tariffs mean that the difference (between purchase price and cost) is paid out of the pockets of those who are unfamiliar with these issues," he said.

Read also: Kyiv to conclude negotiations with IMF on third tranche by end of quarter - Kubiv

He said government would properly service its liabilities before the IMF.

Under the Extended Fund Facility program signed by Ukraine and the IMF there was planned an increase in gas prices as of April 1, 2016 in order to bring them in line with market-oriented prices. However, Arseniy Yatseniuk's government, which resigned last week, postponed the decision for a month.
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