Publication details

The Conduct of Gazprom in Central and Eastern Europe : A Tool of the Kremlin, or Just an Adaptable Player?



Year of publication 2018
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source East European Politics and Societies
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Field Political sciences
Keywords natural gas; Gazprom; energy security; central and eastern Europe; energy policy
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Description This article presents the results of evidence-based research into the behaviour of Gazprom and the relevant behaviour of the Russian government in selected countries of Central, Eastern, and South-Eastern Europe (the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Moldova, and Belarus). The authors’ aim was to determine the scope of involvement by the Russian government in problems that have arisen in supplying these states, and the degree to which these issues have been linked with Gazprom’s conduct and Russia’s foreign policy toward the countries. Another interest was to seek out the key factors that may determine this behaviour in particular environments. To address these goals, the authors monitored specific indicators defined by the strategic approach to energy security (indicators that uncover governmental support, the linking of foreign policy to gas supplies, and misuse of a dominant market position). The core of the research underlying the paper was organized as a set of individual idiographic, theory-guided case studies. Data were gathered from official documents, statistics, articles, analytical studies, and from semi-structured interviews with experts. The exploration revealed that Gazprom has behaved in such a way as to indicate that it is being used as a tool of foreign policy, but the primary factor controlling its behaviour remains the environment in which the company is operating. Two points were crucial: implementation of the IEM rules and—above all—the diversification of sources.
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