chapter  4
Russia’s International Images and its Energy Policy. An Unreliable Supplier?
ByValentina Feklyunina
Pages 22

West were often described as deteriorating. Russia’s growing self-confidence and

assertiveness in the international arena, the emphasis of its leadership on their

willingness to defend the country’s national interests, and particularly a far more

proactive policy in the states of the former Soviet Union, gave rise to growing

concerns over the future of Russia’s relations with the European Union (Marsh 2008).

In the context of the significant dependence of a number of EU member states on

imports of Russian natural gas, much scholarly research has focused on the analysis of

the possible motivations of the Russian authorities and Gazprom, Russia’s state-

controlled gas monopoly. Are they purely economic? Are they geopolitical? Are they a

mixture of both, and if so, which ones are central and why?