Saturday, May 31, 2008

Is the E.U. Energy Policy Reliable Facing the European Dependence on Russian Gas? — PowerPoint

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May 2008

SINGAPORE — This PowerPoint analyzes the energy relations between the European Union (E.U.) and Russia. In specific, it aims to understand what policy the E.U. Commission could implement in order to deal with the E.U. dependence on Russian natural gas.

According to the latest figures the E.U. depends for around 25 percent of its gas requirements on Russia. And if the E.U. does not try to change this trend, in the following years it will really risk depending even more on Russia for its gas necessities. On the one hand, it is true that Europe has depended on Russian gas for at least the last four decades and that this relationship was never interrupted also during the worst frictions of the Cold War era. In other words, although some fears and panic subsequent to some specific events — like the Russia-Ukraine dispute between year-end 2005 and  beginning 2006 — the Soviet Union first, or Russia after 1991, has always been a reliable partner for the European gas necessities. But, in the future this policy may indeed result in at least important high costs while, in the eventuality of Russian failure to honoring its gas commitments towards the E.U., it could engender a real slowdown of the E.U. economic growth. On the other hand, it is also true that the economic exchange between Russian gas and European assets is billions of euro's worth and this economic relation is positive for both the E.U. and Russia.

In light of this condition, the policy recommendations of this document all point toward the E.U. goal of minimizing risks in relations to Russian gas imports.

This PowerPoint is the additional document to the final thesis I wrote and discussed at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy of the National University of Singapore where I completed a master's degree in public policy (M.P.P.) in 2008. The title of the thesis was: "Is the E.U. Energy Policy Reliable Facing the European Dependence on Russian Gas?"


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