Conflict between Russia and Belarus on gas supplies is a new "gas war", according to Razumkov Center Energy Programs Director Volodymyr Saprykin.
"It is actually a new 'gas war" that will touch on all the neighbors... If it is to speak about benefits of any countries in this war, Ukraine will get certain advantages due to an increase in the volumes of gas transit that will be carried out via Ukraine, not via Belarus," Saprykin underscored. "Belarus signed a contract on gas supplies with Gazprom at one price, but it pays another price," the expert noted. In Moscow, the Belarusian gas debt is estimated at almost USD 200 million. Gazprom limited gas supplies to Belarus by 15% with the following increase of the limit to 85%. Earlier, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev instructed Gazprom's management to cut gas supplies to Belarus. Experts, including the Russian ones, believe that Gazprom can redirect gas transit flows to Europe via Ukraine in case of any problems with Belarus. It has not been reported yet about political consequences of such a step for relations between Ukraine and Belarus.