Seminarreihe des Arbeitsbereichs Ökonomie am IOS
Zeit: Dienstag, 13.30–15.00 Uhr
Ort: Leibniz-Institut für Ost-und Südosteuropaforschung (IOS); vorerst online via Zoom, Link wird mit den Einladungen verschickt!
Forschungslabor: „Geschichte und Sozialanthropologie Südost‐ und Osteuropas“
Zeit: Donnerstag, 14–16 Uhr (Lehrstuhl) oder 16–18 Uhr (Graduiertenschule und Leibniz-WissenschaftsCampus)
Ort: WiOS, Landshuter Str. 4 (Raum 017)
(Dr. Manuela Troschke)
The Russian economy is heavily dependent on the oil and gas incomes. The energy sector generates yearly about 25-30% of Russia's GDP and 50% of the federal budget revenues. Approximately two thirds of Russian export income stem from oil and gas. The collapse of oil prices from 130 USD/barrel to 35 USD/barrel in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis in addition to reduced international demand for energy caused a sharp reduction of fiscal revenues and export values and demonstrated the vulnerability of the Russian economy.
Energy has been backing the development of the Russian economy for decades. Russian industrialisation was based upon the availability of cheap energy resources, namely oil and gas, while the role of coal diminished over time. Income generated from energy exports allowed to import technology and equipment from western countries. These settings are preserved to date. Production processes in core industries such as iron and steel or energy production itself are much more energy intensive than in most other industrialised countries. The competitiveness of these energy-intensive industries depends on the status quo.
However, the fundamentals of this development tactic are on the eve of change. The times of easy oil and gas are over. The big deposits that have been put into operation during Soviet times show high depletion rates while new exploration is lagging behind and shows disappointing results. New oil and gas reserves are located in remote areas, far away from national as well as from international consumers. Substitution of oil and gas by other primary energy carriers like coal is limited, the country's reliance upon nuclear energy is economically questionable and the development of alternative energy sources has been neglected. This makes Russia a showcase of a country following a non-sustainable development path.
Russia's reaction to the changing situation was the formulation of the new Energy Strategy of Russia for the Period up to 2030, which was adopted in the end of 2009. Since the Energy Strategy is mainly supply-side oriented, one year after its entering into force, it has been supplemented by the programme Energy Saving and Improvement of Energy Efficiency for the Period up to 2020 (in Russian), which focuses on energy demand. Both governmental documents have taken into account the earlier publications of the international community that - being a consumer of Russian energy - is extremely active in supporting Russia to transit to a low-carbon society. The business-oriented 2009 McKinsey report Pathways to an Energy and Carbon Efficient Russia explores technical and economically feasible measures for energy saving in all sectors of the Russian economy; the policy-oriented joint International Finance Corporation/World Bank (IFC/WB) publication Energy Efficiency in Russia: Untapped Reserves additionally addresses institutional changes necessary for implementation. This issue of OEI Policy Issues online provides a short and comprehensive evaluation of the four documents and concludes that the window of opportunity for change in Russian energy policy is open now.