Author(s): Wang Chengzhi, Li Lifan, James Henderson, Natalia Ulchenko
Editor(s): Stephen Aris, Matthias Neumann, Robert Orttung, Jeronim Perović, Heiko Pleines, Hans-Henning Schröder, Aglaya Snetkov
Series: Russian Analytical Digest (RAD)
Publisher(s): Center for Security Studies (CSS), ETH Zurich; Research Centre for East European Studies, University of Bremen; Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies, George Washington University
Publication Year: 2015
This edition looks at impact of recent geopolitical events on Russia’s energy relations. Firstly, James Henderson suggests that Russia’s decision to cancel South Stream reflects a change in strategy toward its western customers as Europe seeks to diversify sources of supply away from Russia, but that in the future Europe will continue to import Russian gas and Russia may be in a stronger position to negotiate if it is able to develop alternative customers in Asia. Secondly, Natalia Ulchenko considers the reconfiguration of South Stream as Turkish Stream and the future prospects for this project, noting that that the realization of Turkish Stream remains uncertain, and that its future will largely be determined by the wider context of triangular Russia–Turkey–EU geopolitics. Thirdly, Li Lifan and Wang Chengzhi assess the burgeoning natural gas alliance between Russia and China, arguing that both sides are committed to expanding their energy trade relationship, but challenges still need to be addressed, such as the impact of the decline in international oil prices and how best to coordinate their energy cooperation within China’s “one belt and one road” strategy.