Year of Graduation
Natural Gas and Ukrainian Politics before and after 2014
Comparative Politics of Eurasia
This study looks at the changes occurred to the political impact of natural gas in Ukraine after 2014. Once the rupture of 2014 is put in the context of a long, gradual transition from the management of resource abundance to the adaptation of a reality of scarcity, it can be seen that the acceleration of this process in 2014 was driven by a shift in the political context, rather than by institutional change. This leads to two conclusive remarks: the first one is that rentier institutions in the Ukrainian gas sector and Russian influence can exist independently from one another, as reducing the latter didn’t remove the former. The second consideration concerns the outlook for the evolution of the gas sector in Ukraine. The country is now set to develop its important reserves of natural gas, in an effort that could determine an effective resource abundance after decades of an artificial one, which was provided by cheap supplies of Russian gas. The institutional reform of the sector will determine whether this process will result in a new cycle of private rent-extraction or not.