Some of the state’s contracts with middlemen will expire in 2012 and Romania will start purchasing a portion of our import gas straight from Gazprom, Economy Minister Ion Ariton announced on Friday, quoted by HotNews.ro. Ariton further stated that doing away with the middlemen would not necessarily result in lower prices: “The prices are set by the market, depending on supply and demand.” The Economy Minister announced, on the same occasion, that the price of gas would remain stable until April 2012. Ion Ariton further argued that some contracts with middlemen which purchase gas from Gazprom for Romania would expire in 2012, others in 2016, while others would be running until 2020. Gradually, as these contracts expire, Romania will start purchasing gas straight from Gazprom. Moving on to another topic, Gazprom intends to enter the Romanian market and to invest some hundreds million euros here by 2015, according to Realitatea.net. Thus, the company intends to take over the Solventul platform in Timisoara, currently dilapidated, and to build on the premises fuel storehouses, which will cater for several gas stations in Romania and Serbia, as well as Bulgaria and Bosnia.