KIEV (Reuters) – Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said on Wednesday that his country was ready to reduce the cost of gas transit through its territory in an attempt to avoid the energy crisis in Europe, the Ukrainian presidential press service said.

In a phone conversation with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Zelensky said Ukraine can also supply its underground gas storage facilities to store strategic fuel reserves.

Zelensky and von der Leyen also discussed the idea of ​​creating a regional platform to strengthen energy security.

Europe faces an energy crisis due to soaring natural gas prices as demand for fuel increases globally.

Ukraine, a key transit route for Russian gas to Europe, has a gas transportation system, consisting of more than 37,900 km of gas pipelines and 12 underground storage facilities.

In December 2019, the Ukrainian public energy company Naftogaz and the Russian gas company Gazprom signed a contract for the transit of gas from Russia to Europe for 2020-2024.

In 2020, Ukraine pumped some 55.8 billion cubic meters of Russian gas to Europe.

According to local media reports, the Russian-Ukrainian gas transit contract sets the transit tariff at US $ 31.72 per 1,000 cubic meters.

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