The problems of Russia's energy sector, the part of the economy most broadly linked with Russia's prosperity and revived international influence, have been emphasized by the global financial crisis. Yet it remains an open question whether this, as well as various other factors, including the beginning of a genuine gas market and China's methodical advances in Central Asia, could encourage Russia to take the difficult decisions needed to make the energy sector more responsive and competitive. For its part, the EU has the potential to influence Russia, but if it continues to define itself by its divisions, it will not be able to use the influence it has gained. Without a strategic and coordinated approach, the EU is unlikely to be able to overcome its security dilemma and could find that the future is determined by other actors.
The Russia-EU Energy Relationship: Getting it Right