May 29, 2007

Gazprom Eats Austria

At this point, stories like these barely count as news. But when stoves in Portugal won't light because nobody paid the Gazprom bill, people will wonder how it got that way.

"Russian President Vladimir Putin’s May 23-24 visit to Austria laid the ground for that country’s integration into Gazprom’s rapidly expanding network of dependencies. By the same token, it dealt a coup de grace to the Nabucco project for alternative gas supplies to Austria and Europe. Under agreements signed during Putin’s visit, Gazprom is enlarging its market share in Austria and gaining direct access to end consumers. Moreover, it plans to use Austria as a transit corridor to capture European Union markets farther afield, defeating the EU’s declared goal of supply diversification (Jamestown)."

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