Gas Prices in Brief

Georgia Wants New Sources

VIENNA -- Georgian Economic Development Minister Lasha Zhvania said Tuesday that the gas dispute between Russia and Ukraine that led to cutoffs to other parts of Europe showed the need for alternative sources of the commodity.

"The conflict between Russia and Ukraine showed the world that Europe should intensify the diversification of gas supply from the Caspian Sea," Zhvania said on the sidelines of a Vienna Euromoney conference.(Bloomberg)

Oil Rebounds on Gas News

Oil reversed early losses after Gazprom resumed shipments to Europe on Tuesday, sending expiring February U.S. crude futures back above $37 per barrel on cold weather in the northern hemisphere and on reports that OPEC was tightening supply.

U.S. light crude for February delivery was up 93 cents at $37.44 a barrel Tuesday evening, having previously hit a 2009 low of $32.70. Urals crude fell 5.7 percent to $41.88, from $44.43. (Reuters, MT)

British Gas Falls

LONDON -- British natural gas for delivery next month dropped after Russia resumed flows of the fuel through Ukraine to Europe.

Gas for February fell as much as 4.6 percent, according to broker ICAP.

Britain's biggest gas-storage site, Rough, contains less gas at this time of the year than in the previous four years, data compiled by Bloomberg shows. (Bloomberg)

Deal 'Wrong' for Ukraine

KIEV -- Oleksandr Shlapak, first deputy chief of staff at Ukraine's presidential office, said Tuesday that the government's gas agreement with Russia would be more damaging than a deal proposed by exporter Gazprom at the end of last year.

The agreed base price of $450 per 1,000 cubic meters of gas is "absolutely wrong," Shlapak said. That compares with a Gazprom offer of $250 at the end of 2008. Naftogaz Ukrainy is now forced to hold talks with the government on doubling gas rates for consumers, he said. (Bloomberg)