Shifting Political Economy of Russian Oil and Gas
March 23, 2016
Russia is one of the world’s largest hydrocarbon resource holders, producers, and exporters, but it is undergoing an uncertain economic and energy transition. An economic slowdown, the dual shocks of a sharp decline in oil prices and the imposition of finance and technology-oriented sanctions, shifting markets for Russia’s exports, and internal economic and political dynamics are spurring dramatic changes in Russia’s domestic and international oil and gas strategies. These changes, while not predetermined, will impact geopolitics, energy security, oil and gas investment, and global hydrocarbon market dynamics in the near to medium term. Given the sheer size of Russia’s hydrocarbon production, the importance of oil and gas revenue to the health of Russia’s economy, and Russia’s role as an exporter and provider of hydrocarbon infrastructure, this study fills a crucial gap by analyzing the evolution of Russia’s oil and gas sector and its anticipated realignment.
Tatiana Mitrova is head of the Oil and Gas Department at the Energy Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (ERI RAS) in Moscow.