Monday, January 01, 2007

Russia Will Never Sign the EU Energy Charter Treaty

The European Union (EU) wants access to Asian gas via the Russian state-owned Gazprom pipeline, but Rissua does not want to give such obligatory access because it does not want its own interests compromised. Although the EU does not have any negotiating leverage over the Russians, the automatic access to Gazprom's pipeline would give them access to cheaper Asian gas, particularly from Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan. Why would Russia allow its EU customers to buy cheaper gas from a competitor?

The EU might also be operating under the myth that there is extra capacity to carry Asian gas. Of course, the EU and Russia need to negotiate some sort of provisions for a practical Energy Charter Treaty. Gazprom has the world's largest gas pipeline network.

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