Russia continues to play hardball with natural gas for the European Union, trying to get Brussels to sacrifice Ukraine in return for the promise of better relations with Moscow.
The European Commission’s vice-president for energy union, Maros Sefcovic, visited Russia on January 14 to ask exactly what Moscow’s intentions were about the now-cancelled South Stream pipeline. Russian President Vladimir Putin had announced late last year a Russian plan to substitute for it a huge 63 billion cubic meter per year (bcm/y) pipeline project under the Black Sea to Turkey and then up to the Turkish-Greek border. Continue reading
As was stated here before ahead of the trend, the West is punishing Russia by shooting itself in the foot while the Soviets are laughing all the way to the banks in Turkey and China.
The latest, spectacular “Exit South Stream, Enter Turk Stream” Pipelinistan gambit will be sending big geopolitical shockwaves all across Eurasia for quite some time. This is what the New Great Game in Eurasia is all about.
In a nutshell, a few years ago Russia devised North Stream – fully operational – and South Stream – still a project – to bypass unreliable Ukraine as a gas transit nation. Now Russia devises a new sweet deal with Turkey to bypass the “non-constructive” (Putin’s words) approach of the European Commission (EC) concerning the European “Third Energy Package”, which prohibits one company from controlling the full cycle of extraction, transportation and sale of energy resources.
Russian “defeat”? Really?
Turkey also made a killing. It’s not only the deal with Gazprom; Moscow will build no less than Turkey’s entire nuclear industry, and there will be increased soft power interaction (more trade and tourism). Most of all, Turkey is now increasingly on the verge of becoming a full member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO); Moscow is actively lobbying for it. Continue reading