Europe

Thousands protest electricity price hikes in Ukraine

  • Drummers take part in a march as several thousand protesters carry trade union flags during a rally against the increase of prices for electricity, gas and housing outside of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev, Ukraine, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)

    Drummers take part in a march as several thousand protesters carry trade union flags during a rally against the increase of prices for electricity, gas and housing outside of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev, Ukraine, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)  (The Associated Press)

  • Protesters carry trade union flags as they march during a rally against the increase of prices for electricity, gas and housing outside of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev, Ukraine, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)

    Protesters carry trade union flags as they march during a rally against the increase of prices for electricity, gas and housing outside of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev, Ukraine, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)  (The Associated Press)

  • Protesters carry trade union flags as they march during a rally against the increase of prices for electricity, gas and housing outside of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev, Ukraine, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)

    Protesters carry trade union flags as they march during a rally against the increase of prices for electricity, gas and housing outside of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev, Ukraine, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. (AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov)  (The Associated Press)

Several thousand trade union activists have marched through the streets of Kiev, the Ukrainian capital, to the country's parliament t to protest an upcoming hike in utility prices.

The government abolished preferential tariffs for private citizens in April, and the higher prices are expected in September. Although it is not clear how steep the hike will be, trade union activists worry that the growing utility bills will eat up their flagging salaries.

Ukraine's economy has been in decline since Russia annexed Crimea and threw its backing to separatist rebels in eastern Ukraine.

Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman met with protest leaders on Wednesday and pledged to find a compromise solution.