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Europe shivers as Russia and Ukraine argue

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Europe shivers as Russia and Ukraine argue

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There seems little sign of a swift resolution in the gas row between Russia and Ukraine. The EU gets a quarter of its gas from Russia — though some individual countries are far more reliant. In Bulgaria, for instance, 90 per cent of the gas burned is Russian. It means many countries are falling back on their gas stockpiles. Hungary and Bulgaria have restricted industrial gas usage to protect dwindling reserves.

80 per cent of Russian gas bound for Europe transits Ukrainian territory and Moscow has accused Kiev of siphoning off supplies. Austria, Bulgaria, Romania, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Greece, Turkey and Macedonia all reported receiving nothing overnight. France and Italy have also reported a steep fall in deliveries. Russia cut supplies for Ukraine’s domestic use on New Year’s Day after failing to reach agreement over unpaid bills and the price of gas for the coming year.