European Energy Security Governance: Key-Challenges and Opportunities in EU-Russia Energy Relations
Energy relations between the European Union (EU) and Russia have come under increasing strain in recent years, not least due to a series of interruptions in the supply of natural gas to the EU. Tensions are further compounded by Russia‟s recent withdrawal from the Energy Charter Treaty and the fact that agreement on a successor to the over ten year old Partnership and Cooperation Agreement remains outstanding. Through an extensive consultation among key-stakeholders involved, the paper provides a thorough analysis of the current status of EU-Russia energy relations and their major challenges. Departing from a brief chronological analysis that dates from the early 1990s until today, the paper identifies four key outstanding issues which are subsequently analysed in greater detail: (i) reciprocity in market access; (ii) the bilateral and international framework that forms the basis of legal ties between the two powers; (iii) coherence in external energy relations; and (iv) what role the Lisbon Treaty plays in this regard and whether there is a need for a new specific external energy treaty to guide the Union‟s external efforts vis-à-vis Russia. The paper concludes with a number of recommendations on each set of challenges.