Europe’s Energy Security and Dependency on Russia: The Economics and Politics of Energy Market Competition
ISDP FORUM with Fredrik Erixon
Director and Chief Executive of the European Centre for International Political Economy (ECIPE), Brussels
Thursday, April 15, 2010, 14:00-16:00
with comments by
Ambassador Olof Ehrenkrona
Senior Political Advisor at the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs
Few issues are as politically challenging and sensitive in Europe as the quest for stable and competitive markets for energy. Recent years have witnessed recurring problems over gas import from Russia in particular, and the European Union has launched various initiatives to establish better access to external sources of energy. None of these strategies seemed to have worked appropriately. Furthermore, international agreements offer few opportunities to “regulate” irate behavior on the part of exporters; Russia has recently withdrawn from its obligations in the Energy Charter Treaty, and the World Trade Organization offers few disciplines on trade in energy.
In a recent paper, Fredrik Erixon argues that Europe needs to seek solutions to competitive and secure energy supply at home. More, not less, competition in the EU’s gas markets is required to reduce Europe’s vulnerability to gas supply cuts and other disturbances. In particular, the East-West divide within the EU in terms of competition policy must be overcome.
Fredrik Erixon is the Director and Chief Executive of the European Centre for International Political Economy (ECIPE), a world-economy think tank based in Brussels. He is an expert on global and European commercial policy, and has written extensively about energy policy, trade in energy and EU’s policy towards Russia.
Ambassador Olof Ehrenkrona is a Senior Political Advisor at the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs. In the early 1990s, during the collapse of the Soviet Union and the transformation of Eastern and Central Europe, he was the head of policy planning in the Swedish Prime Minister’s Office (1991-1994) and later a CEO in a private consulting company (1995-2006). Olof Ehrenkrona has published a number of books about Swedish political and economic history in the 20th century.
Location: ISDP, Västra Finnbodavägen 2, Stockholm-Nacka. For a map and directions, please go here.
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