Prepared Remarks by George Kent
Chargé d’Affaires, U.S. Embassy Kyiv
July 31, 2017
Good afternoon everyone.
I am proud that today we can mark an important step for Ukraine’s energy security.
Presidents Poroshenko and Trump in their June 20 White House meeting talked about the possibility of Ukraine buying American coal.
Six weeks later, the contract was signed. I wish to congratulate XCoal and Centrenergo for successfully concluding this deal, which will supply U.S. coal to Ukraine ahead of this year’s heating season.
This deal is the latest example of how our close cooperation can be mutually beneficial.
Since 2014 the United States has intensified cooperation with the Ukrainian government to reduce dependence on Russia. As Minister Boyko mentioned, Ukraine is diversifying fuel supplies and creating greater resiliency in the energy sector – with nuclear/Westinghouse, with natural gas, and now in coal with XCoal.
This contract represents the first time XCoal Energy and Resources will supply thermal coal to a customer in Ukraine.
U.S.-origin coal can provide a secure, reliable, and competitive energy source for the Ukrainian people.
As the XCoal CEO mentioned, the contract also supports U.S. jobs in the coal and transportation industries in the states of Pennsylvania and Maryland.
For Ukraine, U.S. coal will bolster critical stockpiles for the winter heating season.
We applaud the Government of Ukraine’s dedication to diversifying supplies, and we hope that this deal augurs even deeper cooperation between our two countries in this critical sector.
Thank you. And now, if there are questions, CenterEnergo CEO Kozemko will answer them.