21 Mar 2014

On Ukrainian gas transit and South Stream – There may be more than meets the eye

Julian Wieczorkiewicz / Arno Behrens

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The EU relies to a considerable degree on imports to meet its demand for natural gas. Whereas Norwegian export pipelines are directly connected to the EU gas system, a major share of Russian gas flows through the Ukrainian territory before reaching consumers located other consumers located down in the supply chain (e.g. Slovakia, Hungary or Italy). But is the Ukrainian gas transit route still a risk? Will the construction of the South Stream pipeline further reduce the importance of Ukraine as a transit country? Or is there more at stake here than meets the eye?

In this Commentary, Julian Wieczorkiewicz and Arno Behrens look into these questions. Julian Wieczorkiewicz is a Research Assistant in the Energy and Climate Change research unit at CEPS. Arno Behrens is Head of Energy and Research Fellow at CEPS.