The January 2006 gas row between Russia and Ukraine rekindled the energy debate with a particular accent on the need for diversification. The situation characterized by a double monopoly – Russian monopoly on gas supply and Ukrainian monopoly on transit system – was not sustainable. Europe's vulnerability on natural gas, accentuated by the Ukrainian gas crisis and the increasing skepticism emanating from the Union's new members, has brought about the need to reassess the EU's energy situation.
In January, the European Commission tabled a comprehensive package of ambitious proposals for a “New Energy Policy for Europe”. As evidenced by the European Council Conclusions of 9 March 2007 based on the European Commission’s Communication “An Energy policy for Europe”, Europe has entered into a new energy era...