Ukraine may use the $189.5 million compensation which former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko was ordered by a court to pay to national energy company Naftogaz, to buy Russian gas, Ukraine's Energy Minister Yury Boyko said on Wednesday.
Tymoshenko was found guilty and handed a seven-year prison sentence and fined on Tuesday for exceeding her authority in forcing through a 2009 gas deal with Russia.
"We will fulfil the court decision and if the money is transferred to Naftogaz, it will be used to pay for gas supplies," Boyko told reporters.
Prime Minister Mykola Azarov has said he expects to revise the gas import agreement with Russia in the next ten to 15 days.
The 2009 gas deal tied the price for Russian gas to international oil prices which rose sharply after 2009, boosting Ukraine's bill. The contract says Ukraine must import no less than 33 billion cubic meters of gas from Russia. Ukraine is set to pay about $400 per thousand cubic meters of imported Russian gas in the fourth quarter of this year.
Kiev insists on reducing both the price and the volume of imports.