Lithuanian Energy Security: Challenges and Choices
Publication Date: December 2006
Author(s): Zeyno Baran
Coverage: Lithuania Russia (Federation)
This White Paper, a collaboration of the Hudson Institute and the Lithuanian Center for Strategic Studies, outlines the energy security situation of Lithuania. Despite being a member of both the EU and NATO, Lithuania remains overwhelmingly reliant on Russia for its energy supply. Ninety percent of Lithuania’s oil, and one hundred percent of its natural gas, is imported from its large eastern neighbor. This dependence poses a serious security threat not only to Lithuania, but also to the EU as a whole.
European Union policymakers have also come to realize the political and economic danger of over-reliance on a single supplier. Typically, member states have exclusively pursued their own interests, hampering efforts at European-level coordination. Accordingly, many EU member states—notably Lithuania—are dangerously vulnerable to political manipulation of the energy supply. As such, establishing a coherent external energy strategy has been a frequently-stated goal of the EU. This January, the European Commission will unveil its recommendations for a Common European Energy Policy.