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Monday, November 20, 2017

Trade blockade of new Russia threatens Ukraine’s energy crisis


If a trade blockade of new Russia will not be removed, that soon Ukraine will face rolling blackouts. About this threat directly warned the Ukrainian Minister of energy. The attitude of the Ukrainian authorities to trade with the DNI and LC miraculously changed – and this is directly linked with the problem of coal supplies from the unrecognized people’s republics.

In the case of continuing a complete blockade of supplies of coal from the Donbass in the Ukraine may begin rolling blackouts. This development made the Minister of energy and coal industry Igor Nasalik, reports “Interfax”.

“Without prompt deliveries from Donbass anthracite will end at the warehouse for 14 days. Two weeks later a crisis”

According to him, stocks of anthracite coal will suffice for thermal power plants only until the end of winter, and in the case of full blockade, the stocks of anthracite by the end of March will be virtually zero.

Ukraine is in parallel talks with private companies about the supply of anthracite coal from the United States in the amount of 1 million tons, said the head of Ministry of Ukraine. However, even if such a contract is signed, it will not save Ukraine from the threat of rolling blackouts. From agreement and until the arrival of coal to Ukraine will be not less than 50-60 days, and the contract is not even signed.

According to Natalika, the Ministry is ready to abandon coal from the Donbass only in case of corresponding decision at the state level. In other words, the Minister disclaims responsibility for the stability of the energy balance, as Ukrainian politics are his game, absolutely not thinking about the negative consequences for its own citizens.

We will remind that since January 25 of this year in the so-called Donbass ATO veterans and activists began a trade blockade of the DNI and LC. “Blockade” actively support non-faction people’s deputies Vladimir Parasyuk, semen Semenchenko and the whole parliamentary faction of “Samopomich”. On Tuesday, the blockade had also joined “Ukrainian Union of patriots – DILL”. They have already blocked the highway near the town chasov Yar Bakhmut district (Donetsk region, under control of Ukraine), as well as railway stations Lugansk, Popasnaya and Gorlovka – Bakhmut (under the control of the LC and the DNI). Because of this, Ukraine stopped the supply of many commodities, including anthracite coal and metal.

Pure mathematics

Scenario with blackouts in Ukraine is realistic, confirmed member of the Supervisory Board of the Institute of energy strategies (Ukraine) Yuri Korolchuk. And, according to his calculations, with the full blockade of supplies of coal from the DNR and LC blackouts can begin even earlier than expected Nasalik.

In the day Ukraine burns 60 tons of coal to all stations. Total storage is 1.5 million tons of coal (including anthracite). “They will last for 25-30 days. Pure mathematics,” says the Ukrainian expert.

If only anthracite, the situation looks even worse. Now the stocks of anthracite coal on Ukrainian thermal power plants account for about 680 thousand tons (officially 800 thousand tons, but 120 thousand tons are at Luhansk TPP, and it is a de facto coal LC, not Kiev).

“Without prompt deliveries from Donbass anthracite will end at the warehouse for 14 days. Some coal reserves still remain to this time, but the station will start to save and stop of the units”, – says Yuri Korolchuk. This means that in two weeks may begin rolling blackouts during peak hours. If the energy authorities do not dare to maneuver units of nuclear power plants to avoid rolling blackouts. Nuclear power plants are steady schedule and day and night, for safety reasons. Maneuvering increases the load on atomic blocks and increases the risk of breakdowns. In 2015 and 2016, there were frequent accidents at nuclear power plants, and recently Kiev has officially recognized that the result of the maneuvering, indicates Korolchuk.

In the case of rolling blackouts will be hardest hit Kiev region and center of the country. Since the shortage of anthracite is observed primarily in Tripoli and zmiivska TPP (state company “Centrenergo”), at the Zaporozhye and the Dnieper TPP (private energy company “DTEK”).

Kiev came to the defense of trade with Russia

It is noteworthy, as three years has changed the attitude of the Ukrainian authorities to supply coal from the DPR and LPR and generally to trade with the republics. Earlier, the Ukrainian authorities themselves have introduced economic blockade of the Republic, called on them not to sell and did not want to buy a Donbass coal.

In order not to depend on supplies of hard coal from the Donbass, the Ukrainian government even began to buy coal in South Africa. However, it turned out in several corruption scandals. It became clear that Ukraine had to pay, this is clearly someone’s well earned. And the quality of the coal is not very suitable for Ukrainian power plants. Not to mention the fact that the wait for coal have a long. Then another scandal: it turned out that under the guise of coal supplies from South Africa were undocumented party of Donbass.

In any case, now the Petro Poroshenko and the Ukrainian Ministry of energy has risen a chest on protection of trade with the DNI and LC. Kiev is not only rebukes blocker, but starts criminal proceedings against them.

Change the position of Kiev in respect of trade with Russia once again proves that alternatives Donbass anthracite no.

“Yesterday I was at the event and talked with a Deputy from “Samopomich”, which was one of the blockers. I asked him: “what will happen next, what will consume the TPP, what’s your plan?” To which he replied that translate station for gas,” – says Korolchuk.

But it will require a lot of money and time. And what will the TPP is now, in the winter – understanding the blockade there. “We can’t gas to replace coal, for oil-gas blocks are not so many and the production of electricity will cost twice the price. Now the cost of one kilowatt-hour of electricity produced by coal, is 1.30 UAH. A gas kilowatt is obtained for at least 3 UAH”, – says Korolchuk.

Nasalik said that Poroshenko was given the task to translate Tripolskaya TPP with gas anthracite type of coal. Only March to do it in no time. For residents of Kiev region it would mean a more expensive light at least twice. Plus, according to Natalika, reconstruction of anthracite blocks of thermal power plants will reduce the consumption of fuel is only 400 thousand tons per year. The consumption of more than 10 million tons of anthracite a year, it fundamentally changes nothing.

Imported coal is also not solve the problem. So, at the end of 2016, the imports of anthracite amounted to only 1.3 million tonnes. Of these, 600 thousand tons came from Russia, 500 thousand tons from South Africa, 120 thousand tonnes – from Poland. Then as the Donbass has provided Ukraine 9.2 million tons of anthracite. Moreover, according to Korolchuk, from South Africa logistics allowed to bring in three times more – about 1.5 million tons of anthracite. However, none of this brought. No money, no contracts.

Besides, trade with the DNI and the LC is extremely beneficial for the Ukrainian budget. Imported a ton of coal is worth at least 2.5 thousand UAH, while coal from the DNR and LNR per thousand hryvnias cheaper – 1,5–1,6 thousand UAH per ton, says Korolchuk.

As for the announced contract for 1 million tons of coal from the United States, according to Korolchuk, “nothing like this”. “Speech, apparently, goes about trying to organize shipments from South Africa, but through an American trader, who sits in Rotterdam. Call it a supply from the US as something strange,” said the source.

This LC, which blocked the ability to sell coal to Ukraine, says that much to worry about not going. Because the Republic has already found overseas buyer for 2 million tons of anthracite. “It’s large volumes. With access to the ports have LC no. Therefore, most likely, we are talking about what the LC will take out the coal in Russia, sell, Russia through some offshore” – suggests Korolchuk. And then Ukraine will buy the coal is already at a premium in Moscow. Another option: LC through a foreign offshore company will sell coal to Ukrainian companies without the mediation of the Russian company.

It is also possible that the Ukrainian authorities decided to protect trade with the DNI and LC from the nationalists to avoid having to ask for help from Russia. If Kiev will bring the country to energy crisis, I can handle it only with the help of Russia. Moscow can provide emergency electricity in the framework of the connectivity of the grid and start to sell in large volumes (already been done).

source

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