#Commentary of Marina Zheynova on how Ukraine trades with ‘aggressor country’
According to the Stockholm Arbitration Court’s decision, “Naftogaz of Ukraine” will resume purchasing gas in Russia. Petro Poroshenko called this decision of the Stockholm Arbitration Court a historical victory, as a result of which Ukraine gained energy independence.
It is obvious that the President of Ukraine muddles the facts in the midst of propaganda. The Chairman of the Board of the NJSC “Naftogaz of Ukraine” Andrey Kobolev expresses much more restrained and notes that it is simply advantageous for Ukraine to buy gas in Russia at the price stated in Stockholm. And this, according to him, is a victory on all controversial clauses of the contract. Now, as a ‘winner’, “Naftogaz” have to pay $2 billion to a ‘loser’, “Gazprom”, for gas supplied. However, the fact of this payment is denied in the Ukrainian company, indicating that the final figures will be known in the end of February.
In conjunction with media frenzy over the resumption of Russian gas purchases, the Ukrainian press reports that Ukraine has reached a record-high level of import of goods from Russia. It has increased by 38.6%. In 2017, Ukraine purchased goods for $6.3 billion in Russia. Export to Russia has also increased by 18%. Thus, mutual trade with the ‘aggressor country’ is well underway.
All of this takes place against the backdrop of incessant anti-Russian propaganda. Frankly speaking, the news from Ukraine reminds schizophrenic delusion. Here Russia is an ‘aggressor’ and then Ukraine trades with it. In this situation, the main thing for Ukrainians is not to confuse what and when to talk about Russians.
It turned out that such thing as Russophobia was not a big seller even in the West so it was possible to refuse from trade relations with the eastern neighbor. The Ukrainians played themselves. They tried to sell their hatred for Russia to the West for the mythical benefits from trading with it, and, eventually, they are forced to persuade the Russian Federation to buy food from them. This is especially funny when Ukraine goes to court and demands to force Russia to lift sanctions from Ukrainian goods. This is a very inconsistent measure from Ukraine, energetically ‘independent’ state.
An obvious conclusion offers itself: the Ukrainian politics is mendacious. For citizens and Western partners, propaganda decries Russia and, in reality, Ukraine continues having trade relations with the ‘aggressor’, assuring that “war it may be, but a trade should be as plannedʺ.
Marina Zheynova, the DPR People’s Council deputy