Monday, October 16, 2006

Gas Wars: Part 2½

In EDM, Vladimir Socor writes about how Moscow and Germany are working together to keep Ukraine’s President Yushchenko “out of the loop” on a new deal that involves control by Moscow of Ukraine’s single largest economic and strategic asset:

Moscow seems set to move to claim control over Ukraine’s gas transit system, in association with Germany as a minority partner. Politically, it will try to sell its move in Ukraine as a comprehensive settlement of past debts and evidence of restraint on future prices. It will try to sell it politically in the West as a major investment project to modernize Ukraine’s system in the interest of Western consumers. And it will portray it both in Ukraine and in the West as an “international” consortium with Germany in tow, obscuring Berlin’s actual role in an energy partnership that Russia is shaping on its own terms.

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