The Western Balkans Geopolitics and Russian Energy Politics

Muhidin Mulalic, Mirsad Karic


The Energy politics is today at the center of the Russian and the Western Balkans relations. It is widely known that Russia has been playing significant role in world energy supply. Therefore, Russian energy companies have taken a leading role in the promotion of their businesses in the Western Balkans. The Western Balkans region has become geostrategic partner as a transit route for the integration of Russia into the global energy world market. With regards to the transportation of gas Western Balkans as a transit route is determined to fully realize South Stream project. In contrast to “a buffer zone” role, in the past few decades the Western Balkans gained an attention from Russia and became an important geopolitical bridge towards Western Europe. Such geopolitical and geostrategic planning of Russia is apparent with regards to gas and oil. Due to Russian South Stream gas pipeline project the Western Balkans became an important European energy transforming center. These new geostrategic games over the pipeline have also revived the Russian historical interests in the Balkans. This paper aims to analyze Russian-Western Balkans relations with special emphasis on energy politics and geopolitical and geostrategic interdependence of Russia and the Western Balkans.


Russia; Western Balkans; Energy Politics; Geopolitics

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