Journal of International Relations, European, Economic and Social Studies
B. EUâ€™s demand for gas Europe is the second largest oil and gas market in the world. Many European countries receive the natural gas they consume from Russia. They have suffered in recent years from the disruption of the gas supply during critical months of the year because of the bilateral conflicts between Russia and transit countries, namely Ukraine and Belarus. These disruptions forced both Russia and the consumers of Russian gas to diversify the routes through which the gas would be carried. On the other hand, some EU countries are over-dependent on Russian natural gas with as high as 70 or more per cent of their consumption coming from that single source. This has led them to look for ways to diversify not only the routes of energy but also the sources of energy. It is in light of these two requirements for diversification that the Turkey option comes forward. Turkey is located in between the main hydrocarbon reserves of the world, on the one hand, and a major consumer of hydrocarbon, namely Europe, on the other (Map-4). It may contribute to the diversification of both the sources of energy and routes of energy, because Turkey is not major oil and gas producing country. It imports oil and gas from five different countriesâ€”namely Iraq, Iran, Azerbaijan, Russia and Egypt. This does not mean that all oil and gas has to be transported through Turkey. Other routes do exist and they are being fully utilized. In fact a sizeable part of Russian gas consumed by the member countries of the EU are transported through pipelines laid on the North of the Black Sea. These routes will continue to be utilized in addition to other routes. At present, the EU consumes around 530 billion cubic meters of gas per year.
Turkey on the European doorstep
Published on Feb 16, 2012
A Publication based on the International Conference organised at the European Parliament/Brussels by Dr. ELENI THEOCHAROUS, Member of the Eu...