The European Union, Energy Security an dthe Ukrainian October 2012 Election: Just Another Brick in the Wall?
The international political economy of energy is undergoing fundamental change. New actors emerge, the global energy gravity centre is shifting eastwards, the state is back with a vengeance, and national energy companies play an increasingly important role. The BRICs – Brazil, Russia, India and China – are often accredited as important drivers of geopolitical change and the shift of political and economic power away from the OECD countries in general and the EU in particular. The EU has taken a broadly liberal, free trade oriented, approach to energy policy in general, and to energy security – the challenge of securing a stable supply of gas as reasonably prices – in particular. The Ukraine’s status as a key transit county notwithstanding, there is little reason to expect the 2012 elections to prompt the EU to change its energy policy significantly. Political developments in the Ukraine present a challenge, but this is part of a broader set developments in the international political economy of energy that the EU is presently dealing with.