Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Reducing European dependence on Russian gas

This paper, published this week – and downloadable from the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies website here – assesses the real time-scales and costs for European countries of diversifying from imports of Russian gas. I am one of the co-authors; I contributed material on Ukraine, on the “southern gas corridor” from the Caspian, and on some geopolitical issues.

Friday, 17 October 2014

Moscow seminar on The Russian Gas Matrix

On 16 October, The Russian Gas Matrix: how markets are driving change - which I co-edited - was the subject of a seminar at the Institute of World Economy and International Relations (IMEMO) in Moscow. My colleague Jonathan Stern and I spoke about the book, and Vladimir Feigin (president of the Institute of Energy and Finance) and Anna Zhur (chief expert in the department of foreign economic activity of Gazprom) commented.

There was a big audience of academic researchers and journalists who follow the energy sector, students, and representatives of companies and international organisations. Questions and discussion focused on the impacts on the Russian gas sector of the deteriorating political relations between Russia and governments in Europe, which - notwithstanding the focus by Russian gas companies on opening up the Asian market - remains, and will remain, the main destination for Russian gas exports.

The slides of our presentation are on the IMEMO web site here. There is a report here (Russian only) and pictures here. Our warmest thanks to our colleagues at IMEMO for arranging the seminar.

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

The Ukraine crisis: another crossroads on Russia's downward path

"Obsessive" focus on the Russian government's geopolitical aspirations "obscures larger issues", I argue in the Oxford Energy Forum (downloadable free here). Those issues include Russia's declining economic influence over, and energy trade with, Ukraine and other neighbours, and that "its own economy is becoming more and more one-sidedly a supplier of oil, gas and other raw materials to world markets, and its own development in the broadest sense is suffering as a result".