European Union Energy Companies Court Moscow

By White, Jeffrey | The Christian Science Monitor, June 21, 2007 | Go to article overview

European Union Energy Companies Court Moscow


White, Jeffrey, The Christian Science Monitor


Burckhard Bergmann, chairman of the board at German energy supplier E.ON Ruhrgas, holds another title not likely to appear on his business card: Russia's honorary consul in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia.

Mr. Bergmann took the post late last year, raising some concern about conflicts of interest between Germany's largest energy company and one of the world's largest energy exporters.

"President Putin told me, 'You are my new employee in Germany now,' " joked Bergmann - the only foreigner with a seat on the board of Gazprom, Russia's energy giant - during a recent interview in Der Spiegel, a prominent German news magazine. "But he was laughing when he was saying that."

Brussels isn't laughing. As European Union (EU) leaders - meeting Thursday for a two-day summit - struggle to establish a unified energy security policy that will lessen the bloc's dependence on Russia, the close ties between many European energy companies and Moscow pose a signficant challenge.

In a bid to secure a foothold in Russia's vast natural-gas reserves, E.ON, Gas de France, and Eni of Italy have in the past year signed new, long-term contracts with Kremlin-backed Gazprom that allow it direct access to their markets and consumers. The result is that Gazprom's grip on European markets is growingstronger, controlling not only the exploration and delivery of natural gas, but, increasingly, the sale of it as well.

"This is a problem for Europe," says Katinka Barysch, chief economist at the Center for European Reform in London. "What we're trying to do in Europe is create an integrated, open, and liberal gas market. You can't do that if you have one company controlling the entire gas supply chain."

A call for more deals with Gazprom

Last month, officials from E.ON, Gas de France, Eni of Italy and others joined Gazprom at the Russian House of Science and Culture here for an energy conference - less than a week after an EU-Russia summit collapsed in part over differences on energy policy. At the conference, executives called for a thaw in EU-Russian relations and said more dealings, not fewer, with Gazprom are the key to energy security.

The relationship between Gazprom and different European energy companies often goes deeper than simple supply contracts (see box).

In a prearranged deal, Eni bid this spring on behalf of Gazprom when valuable assets of the now-defunct Russian energy company Yukos went on auction. After selling Yukos assets to Gazprom, Eni was granted access to Gazprom's gas fields.

Gazprom produces 90 percent of Russia's natural gas and owns most of its pipelines. Europe gets 25 to 40 percent of its natural gas from Russia, a figure that could double two decades from now, according to Fariborz Ghadar, director of the Center for Global Business Studies at Penn State University. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • A full archive of books and articles related to this one
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

European Union Energy Companies Court Moscow
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

    Already a member? Log in now.