Updated 3:50 p.m. Moscow Time
KIEV, September 24 (RIA Novosti) – Gas prices in Ukraine may quadruple by the end of the year as the country's state oil and gas company Naftogaz prepares to introduce a single gas price for all types of consumers by the end of 2014, Ukraine's UNIAN news agency reported Wednesday.
"It is possible that decisions leading to further increases in gas prices will be made this year. There is even a possibility… that a single gas price will be established for commercial and individual consumers," the UNIAN news agency quoted deputy chief of national oil and gas company Naftogaz, Oleksandr Todiychuk, as saying.
The move "will cause fuel prices for individual consumers to quadruple," the agency said.
The report comes as Ukraine is bracing itself for a tough winter. Kiev and Brussels are negotiating prices for reverse gas from the EU to cover increased demand during the peak season after Kiev's split with Moscow saw Russian gas deliveries stop.
In mid-June, Russia's Gazprom introduced a prepayment system for gas deliveries to Ukraine due to Kiev's massive gas debt of around $5.3 billion. On September 3, Ukrainian Prime Minister Yatsenyuk said Kiev offered Russia two options on gas prices: $300 per 1,000 cubic meters during the summer and $380 during the winter.
In response to Yatsenyuk's statement, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said Moscow would only agree to a price of $385, and would resume cooperation on the issue no sooner than the debt is repaid.