Ukraine plans to triple offshore gas production in the Black Sea from 1.1 billion cu m to 3 billion cu m, Energy and Coal Industry Minister Yuriy Boyko said in an interview with RBC Ukraine on Thursday.
Ukraine is placing high priority on its efforts to build up its own gas production. The target output of 3 billion cu m will help fully meet the requirements of the Crimean Peninsula for gas, he said.
Ukraine has long been seeking to alter the terms of the 2009 gas deal it signed with Russia. The deal ties the price of gas to oil prices, which have risen strongly since 2009, boosting Ukraine's gas bill.
Ukraine will have to pay some $416 per cubic meter of Russian gas in 2012. Kiev insists the price and volume of its gas imports should be reduced.
Boyko announced this January that the country was seeking to cut Russian gas imports to 27 billion cubic meters from the 2012 contracted volume of 52 bcm. Russian gas giant Gazprom reacted by saying the current contract did not stipulate unilateral changes in gas purchases.