MERIDIANS OF ENERGY PARTNERSHIP
Ambassador Vladimir Chizhov, “Oil of Russia” No. 1, 2011
Cooperation in the energy sphere is a major element in Russia-EU relations
A key priority in the strategic partnership between Russia and the EU is, undoubtedly, collaboration in the energy sphere. After all, it is quite obvious that, in the foreseeable future, it is precisely the European Union that will remain Russia's key partner in hydrocarbon production, transportation and sale, electricity trade, encouragement of energy efficiency/saving, energy diversification, providing for the physical security of the vital energy infrastructure, and addressing climate change and sustainable development issues.
Quite naturally, being neighbors, Russia and the European Union are striving to develop mutually beneficial relations in these spheres on the basis of consideration of each other's interests and a focus on developing common approaches to addressing the most pressing problems. Both Russia and the EU have already formed their approaches to creating mechanisms for regulating energy markets, this having engendered a serious transformation of the legislative framework. The most material and, I would say, broadly discussed changes took place in the European Union with the adoption of the so-called Third Energy Package. In 2010, Russia adopted its Energy Strategy - 2030, focused on innovative development of the fuel and energy complex. All this necessitates that the parties once again align themselves on aspects of both bilateral and multilateral cooperation.