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Russia’s Energy Strategy in the Northeast Asian Region and New Korea-Russia Cooperation: Focusing on the Natural Gas and Hydrogen Sectors economic cooperation, energy industry

Author Joungho Park, Boogyun Kang, Seok Hwan Kim, Won Soon Kwon, and Andrey Kovsh Series 21-13 Language Korean Date 2021.12.30

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   This study explores new directions for energy cooperation between Korea and Russia, focusing on the areas of natural gas and hydrogen. In particular, we derive new directions and tasks for energy cooperation between the two countries, reflecting changes in the international energy environment, such as climate change and decarbonization, which are in full swing at the global level.
   In Chapter 2, this paper examines the geopolitics of energy coming into the 21st century and Russia’s new energy strategy. First, while tracing changes in energy geopolitics and hegemony in the 21st century, we analyzed changing factors that directly or indirectly affect the new hegemony structure, such as technological development, the growth of alternative energy markets, and climate change issues. Then, we reviewed the main contents and points of Russia’s Energy Strategy to 2035 and hydrogen energy development plan, identifying the direction of Russia’s energy strategy toward Northeast Asia.
   In Chapter 3, this study conducts an in-depth analysis of the energy cooperation strategies of China and Japan, major Northeast Asian countries, with Russia. In particular, we comprehensively reviewed the progress, major achievements and characteristics of China and Japan’s cooperation with Russia in the natural gas sector. In addition, this study draws policy implications for Korea based on a careful review of energy policy directions for Russia pursued by China and Japan, which have recently declared carbon neutrality.
   Chapter 4 comprehensively evaluates Korea’s energy strategy and Korea-Russia energy cooperation. Korea’s energy cooperation with Russia has been an area of great interest since the early days of diplomatic relations between Korea and Russia. However, looking at the overall situation so far, energy cooperation between the two countries has had nearly no remarkable achievements other than the Korea Gas Corporation introducing natural gas from Sakhalin. Cooperation between the two countries in the field of gas remains at the level of commercial relations based on purchases and sales. In this regard, we proposed a plan for Korea-Russia cooperation that reflects changes in the new energy market.
   Finally, Chapter 5 presents new plans for Korea-Russia energy cooperation. This includes signing a “New Energy Partnership” cooperation agreement, vitalizing and strengthening the governance of energy cooperation with Russia, finding ways to cooperate in the area of energy in traditional and new fields, devising ways to cooperate in energy-related and other industries, and developing new cooperative measures in response to major transitions in the energy sector.
In conclusion, this study emphasizes that strategic consideration and political will at the government level for energy cooperation with Russia will act as a key factor for the development of bilateral relations with Russia and the future of the Northern Policy.

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