The diplomatic row between Russia and the EU has a large component in relation to the energetic issues. Actually, most of the pipelines that connects Russia to the EU runs through Ukraine, which has been (up to our days) the supplier of almost 80% of oil and gas to the Eurozone. Other pipelines supplies has been brought forward by the cooperation between the EU and the USA ( as the TAP pipeline running through Turkey project), but still energetic issues are solved looking to Eastern Europe.For this reason, the crisis that broke out in the eastern country shifts the energetic problem to a deeper ground.
The negotiating ground between Russia and Ukraine about the pipelines seemed to have been settled without western foreign negotiations and the agreements, that are 4 years old (on which V. Putin, Russian Prime Minister, still relies), are the one that have been already signed by Viktor Yanukovych, Ukraine’s former Prime Minister ( and for this reason contested by Ukraine’s authorities), that could cut the energy supplies delivered by Russia to Ukraine and lead to severe problems in the energetic sectors in the Eurozone, fact that which now seems more realistic. EU collaboration with the Ukrainian government has surely a large importance for the consolidation of the agreements about the energetic supplies, but Ukraine is still strongly linked to Russia ( as we can see with the negotiations) and the link includes both energetic and foreign policies sectors which, for this reason, creates inter-eastern policies where the EU could have problems to manage a strategic deal in the short-terms. The change that we are facing about the importance of energetic issues in the geopolitical ground, has proven that the upper hand is now in the hands of the Russian government, whose large resources could have a big impact on foreign policies, especially for the Eurozone.
Andrea Jorma Buonfrate
For more information: