Russia – Central Asia Relations in the Gas Industry: The Implications for the Energy Security of Europe
AbstractThe discussion of the energy security of Europe is focused mainly on Russia. However, Russia - Central Asia energy relations became very important in Eurasia after the dissolution of the USSR. While its reserves of strategic raw materials (especially gas) are not comparable with those in Russia, Central Asia could be an additional source for supplying these raw materials to Europe. Europe should be involved in "The Great Game" for Central Asian gas.The significance of Central Asia regarding the increasing demand for gas in Europe cannot be overestimated. On the other hand, due to the growing interest of China and other Asian powers in Central Asia, maintaining a local gas pipeline network which would move gas in the direction of Europe (rather than in the direction of other Asian countries) should be a priority for both European countries and Russia. The rivalry between Russian and non-Russian pipeline projects for delivering gas is secondary in this context.
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