Framing the Gas Market Uncertainty in Russian Gas Export Policy: The Role of Underlying Ideas
Chen, Chun-Ling (2016-08-15)
Aineistoon ei liity tiedostoja.
Gas suppliers including Russia are facing the gas market uncertainty caused by the fast growing development of shale gas and liquefied natural gas (LNG). Given that Russia is one of the key energy suppliers in the world, Russian energy policy is intensively studied. However, the majority of the researches focus on the conventional gas sector and very few focus on the unconventional gas sector such as shale gas and LNG. In this light, this thesis aims at examining how the gas market uncertainty is framed in Russian gas export policy as well as discover how the interaction between underlying ideas and the policy frames informs policymaking. After analyzing Russian official documents, three policy frames were identified: shale gas—competition frame, LNG—cooperation frame and cooperation—competition frame. The shale gas—competition frame emphasizes the confrontation with the shale revolution in the USA. The LNG—cooperation frame rests on the idea of building cooperation with the Asia-Pacific region by the LNG trade. The cooperation—competition frame describes the oscillating Russia-EU relationship. Both the economic and ecological dimensions in the policy environment enable these three policy frames. However, the cooperation frame is constrained by the physical dimension since Russia has only one LNG facility in use. The institutional dimension underpins the idea of competition in the cooperation—competition frame. The reason is because of the divergent perspectives between Russia and the EU regarding regulations and market liberalizations. In sum, the result is different from the traditional geopolitical frame which depicts Russia as an energy superpower. Instead, this thesis suggests that Russia is shifting the priority from political interests to business interests in Russian gas export policy, particularly in the domain of shale gas and LNG.