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Ukraine should resume power supplies to Poland in near future: PM

Kiev — * PM allow exports despite domestic shortages

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Ukraine should resume power exports to Poland in the near future in order to help the country overcome power shortages, the prime minister said Thursday.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk ordered the Energy and Coal Industry Ministry to take immediate steps to ensure maximum possible supplies of power to Poland, the government said in a statement.

"We have to support our friends in Poland and do everything possible to help our partners to stabilize the situation in the country's energy sector as soon as possible," Yatseniuk said in a statement.

Yatseniuk urged the ministry to resume power supplies to Poland despite the fact that Ukraine's power grid faces a gap in the balance of power production and demand as five nuclear power reactors with a combined capacity of 5,000 MW are currently closed for maintenance.

Ukraine, has been experiencing power shortages over the past 12 months due to an armed conflict with pro-Russian separatists in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, last year suspended power exports to Poland, Belarus and Moldova, and sharply reduced supplies to Slovakia, Hungary and Romania.

Ukraine, traditionally a net power exporter, resumed power imports from Russia earlier this month in order to help ease power shortages for domestic consumers and to avoid power cuts throughout the country.

Ukraine will probably import at least 300 million kWh of power from Russia in August to help overcome power shortages in the country, according to the energy and coal industry ministry.

--Alexander Bor,
--Edited by Jonathan Fox,