The impact of energy resources in foreign policy

Blerim Abedini, the Center for Security Studies and Development.

Worldwide, one billion of people have not electrical power in their houses and many countries in Africa and Asia have lack of energy resources. Statistics show that the EU-28 is the largest producer of electricity in the world that originates from nuclear reactors. Russia has the largest natural gas reserves in World. Despite sanctions against Russia, however it leaked gas to European countries. So sanctions are ignored because of needs for energy from many European countries.

Based on Eurostat statistics for 2013, most of world part consumed 13594 million tones (in tones of oil equivalent-toe). Worldwide, one billion of people have not electrical power in their houses and many countries in Africa and Asia have lack of energy resources. Energy consumption of natural resources at the global level in 2013 was, 65.8% oil, 16.8% natural gas and 16% coal. The largest importer of electricity in the world was the EU(28 countries) in the amount of 1442 million tones. The largest exporters are the Gulf countries like Saudi Arabia, which has produced 420 million tones, 593 million tones Rusia- and EU-28 by  533.4 million tones.
The EU-28 in 2013 includes import of fuel oil (62%), natural gas (24%) and coal (11%). As it has produced 5.8% or 790.4 million tones and exported 4% or 533.4 million tones, related to total consumption worldwide.

According to data of 2013 the EU has produced coal & lignite 19,7%, 9,1% oil, natural gas 16.7%, 28.6% nuclear energy, renewable energy 26%, or 790 million tones worldwide. EU-28 for production of electric power is using nuclear energy is 26.6%, coal 26.5%, gas 16.4%, 15.4% renewable energy and hydro power by 13.2%. Statistics show that the EU-28 is the largest producer of electricity in the world that originates from nuclear reactors.

In 2013 Russia produced 9.8% or 1340.2 million tones of energy resources worldwide. While exports 620.3 million tones or 4.5% worldwide. This shows that Russia is using energy resources for national needs. Russia has the largest natural gas reserves in World. It is second largest with coal reserves. This is 32% of world proven natural gas reserves, 12% of the proven oil reserves, 10% of the explored coal reserves and 8% of the proven uranium reserves.

China in 2013 produced 18.9% or 2565.7 million tones and imports 4% or 552 million tones worldwide. National consumer needs in 2013 was 22,2% or 3010 million tones of equivalent size. This shows that China does not export electricity abroad because of the high national demands.
US produced 13.8% or 1881 million tones and imported 582 million tones, or 4%. It has exported 274 million tones or 2%. But national needs have been 16% or 2 188 million tones. This shows that the US national needs are high and it exports a small amount of energy resources.

Croatia – produces between 60-65% of its gas consumption and imports the rest from Russia. Since South Stream collapsed, Croatia is looking to import resources from Asia, Africa and North America which are expensive than Russian gas. In 2013, Croatia had 4,3 million tones(toe) production and 9,2 mil tones(toe) of consumption.

Greece – Two-thirds of the country’s gas requirements are supplied by Russia via Turkey and Bulgaria while by Algeria are importing LNG. Greece primarily imports crude oil from Russia (33%), Saudi Arabia (17%), Iraq (17%), Libya (13%) and Kazakhstan (9%). There are ten oil terminals in Greece (in which six can accept crude oil) and four refineries operated by Hellenic Petroleum and Motor Oil Hellas. In 2013, Greece had 9,5 mil tones(toe) production and 28 mil tones(toe) of consumption.

Romania – Produces 85% of energy for national needs, while 15% of its gas consumption is supplied by Russia.

Serbia –  Imports 90% of natural gases delivered from Russia. In 2013, Serbia had 11 million tones(toe) production and 19 million tones(toe) of national consumption.

Kosovo – There is an absence of natural gas resources or pipeline to import gas. The long term feasibility for importing energy resources  is going  with assistance from the Energy Community, World Bank Group and other institutions.

Macedonia – small imports are from Russia. It has only one existing oil refinery owned 81% by Hellenic Petroleum, and it produces more than 90% of the country’s total refined products. The country imports more oil products than crude oil. In 2013 Macedonia has produced 1,4 mil tones and consumed 2,8 mil ton equivalent of oil.

Montenegro – relies principally on electricity and currently has no domestic gas production or distribution system. It has alternative solutions by importing energy resources with higher price from different markets.

Albania – Albania currently has no natural gas import capacity; however, with the construction of the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline (TAP), the country will have three connection points. TAP is expected to contribute €500 million to the Albanian economy. In 2013, Albania had 2,7 mil tones(toe) production and 3,2 mil tones(toe) of consumption. Albania with large energy resources in Europe  these years has losses because of low prices in energy markets.

Bosnia and Herzegovina– Imports gas from Russia. In 2013, Bosnia has production by 3.8 million tones (toe) and Consumption of 6,2 million tones (toe). As a country that needs the energy resources it has some political issues of inter-ethnic character. Therefore there is an unequal distribution of gas in its territory in terms of the source. Other alternatives of supply from other countries have higher prices.
Bulgaria– had 9.8 million tones (toe) production and 19 million tones (toe) of Consumption.
It needs energy resources because of recovery of the national economy  during transition reforms. Bulgaria now has two reactors that meet the requirements of a third of the population. As we know nuclear reactors are dangerous for the region. Some reactors were shut down in its recommendations for EU membership. On the other side- Black Sea offers a special convenience for the supply of natural gas.

By statistics we see that European countries need energy resources. Requirements for natural gas in Europe are linked to political and economic issues. Economic sanctions against Russia are not sustainable because the EU demographic differences. Despite sanctions against Russia, however it leaked gas to European countries. So sanctions are ignored because of needs for energy from many European countries.

Russia and Turkey agreement for new route of gas pipeline is undermining European route of gas import called ‘Nabuco’. Seems EU has to liberalize gas market because of failing ‘Nabuco’ project. Trilateral relations between USA, Russia and EU will improve due to new policy under President Donald Trump, who will enforce EU to continue relations as a few years ago.
Europe’s geostrategic position is unfavorable for ‘Cold Peace’ with the Russian Federation. It should be devoted to scientific cooperation with Russia as are projects across the space research because of experience in this regard.

Sources:

International Energy Agency,  http://www.eia.gov

Balkan Economic Forum, http://www.balkaneconomicforum.org/wp/balkan-energy-strategies/

European Statistics-Eurostat,  http://www.ec.europa.eu/eurostat

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