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Ukraine's Central Role in Europe's Energy Security

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Join the NAOC as we host an expert panel discussion of the critical role of Ukraine in European energy security.

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Gas transit through Ukraine is a matter not just of energy security but of national security for Ukraine and other countries in the wider region. Russia showed its willingness to the weaponize gas trade when it cut off supplies to Ukraine and Europe in the middle of winter in 2006 and 2009. Many believe that Russia's dependence on Ukraine for gas transit is the most significant barrier to Moscow's escalation of military hostilities in occupied eastern Ukraine. The country's pipeline network has a capacity roughly equal to Russia's westward exports, yet Gazprom spent billions of dollars constructing the Nord Stream 1 and Turk Stream pipelines that circumvent Ukraine and Eastern Europe more broadly. Russia continues to champion the Nord Stream 2 pipeline project, despite the broad opposition throughout the region as well as in Brussels and Washington. The current contract between the Gas Transmission System Operator of Ukraine (GTSOU) and Gazprom foresees small volumes of transit (equivalent to about one-third of Ukraine's capacity) through the end of 2024, and even that is not certain if Nord Stream 2 becomes operational. The webinar will address the central place of Ukraine in Europe's energy security and its broader trans-Atlantic geopolitical and geoeconomic security implications.

Speakers:

Dr. Robert M. Cutler, the panel moderator, is Senior Research Fellow and Director of the Energy Security Program at NATO Association of Canada. Educated at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (ScB) and The University of Michigan (PhD), he started out as an academic specialist in Soviet foreign policy. After 1991 he branched out into policy analysis and consulting as an expert in International Energy Diplomacy, Security and Geo-economics, focusing on Europe and Eurasia. He has advised energy firms, governments, international institutions and NGOs while maintaining an active profile publishing widely in leading policy reviews, academic journals and the press. He is also Fellow, Canadian Energy Research Institute; Fellow, Canadian Global Affairs Institute; and Past Chairman, Board of Directors, Montreal Press Club.

Sergiy Makogon is Director General, Gas Transit System Organization of Ukraine (GTSOU) LLC, at the helm of which he has overseen the establishment of Ukraine’s independent transit operator, following the successful unbundling from gas trading and production in 2019. He managed the development of new codes for the TSO and Storage Facilities, implemented the Customs Warehouse Regime to boost the attractiveness of gas transit through Ukraine. He was previously responsible for a gas transmission strategy of Ukraine at Ukrtransgaz and Naftogaz. Prior to that, he held senior positions at Microsoft, Deloitte, and Ericsson. Sergiy Makogon is a graduate of the National Technical University of Ukraine and holds an MBA degree from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona.

Agata Łoskot-Strachota was educated principally at the University of Warsaw and holds an advanced degree in international economics. She has been an energy policy analyst since 2001 and is a senior research fellow at Warsaw-based Centre for Eastern Studies (OSW). Her areas of expertise within the general subject of international energy relations include the oil and gas sector and energy policy in Russia, the Caspian Sea region, the East European energy transit countries, and Central and Southern Europe. At present she focuses on challenges to the EU's security of energy supply, the external dimension of EU energy policy, EU-Russia energy relations and developments in European gas market.

Andreas Umland is a Research Fellow at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs in Stockholm, Associate Professor of Political Science at the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Senior Expert at the Ukrainian Institute for the Future in Kyiv, as well as editor of the book series Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics and Society (ibidem-Verlag, 2004–). He was educated at Educated at Oxford, Berlin, Stanford and Cambridge and focuses on contemporary Ukrainian and Central/East European affairs.. His articles and analyses have appeared (in English, German and Russian) in such reviews as Survival, Journal of Democracy, European History Quarterly, Europe-Asia Studies, Problems of Post-Communism, Communist and Post-Communist Studies, Osteuropa, Politicheskie issledovaniia and Voprosy filosofii.

Dr. Maria Shagina is a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Eastern European Studies at the University of Zurich. She is currently affiliated with the Geneva International Sanctions Network at the Graduate Institute. Her research interests cover international sanctions and energy politics with a particular focus on the post-Soviet states. Her publications have appeared in the CSS Analyses in Security Policy, European Council on Foreign Relations, Foreign Policy Research Institute, Atlantic Council, and New Eastern Europe. Previously, she held a postdoctoral fellowship at the Ritsumeikan University in Japan and was a visiting fellow at the Centre for Russian, European, and Eurasian studies at the University of Birmingham. She holds a PhD in Political Science from the University of Lucerne.

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