Donetsk, Jan 15 - DAN. Donetsk People’s Republic first deputy minister of construction and public utilities Vitaliy Kizhayev denied Ukrainian media reports alleging that the DPR had increased utility rates  for residents.

“To deny various rumours on the Internet which are being spread to cause the population’s disconent and rock the situation in the Republic, I underscore again that the utility rates for residents will not be incraseased,” Kizhayev told the Donetsk News Agency on Tuesday. “The Republic’s leadership takes into account the economic problems occurring in wartime and believes that the rates should be kept unchanged.”

The deputy minister noted that the current utility rates did not cover public utilities’ expenses because of the increases in prices of materials, fuel and parts over the recent years. He added that this was another factor contributing to the price hike rumours.

“We’re making joint efforts to keep this imbalance in check; so far we have been successful,” Kizhayev said.” Timely payment of utility bills guarantees utility companies’ quality operation and stable rates.”

Earlier, Ukrainian media reported that the DPR was drawing a programme to justify an increase in utility rates.*jk