Eurasia Center Deputy Director David Koranyi writes for the Huffington Post on how to make the West’s sanctions more effective against Russia:
The European Union, in coordination with the United States, finally decided to impose serious sanctions on Russia. In addition to measures against the financial sector, they include energy sector sanctions that bar export of highly sophisticated technologies needed in deep-sea drilling, Arctic exploration, and shale oil projects. These sanctions have the potential to seriously undermine Putin’s regime in the medium-term, but must be further tightened to close loopholes and cover previously contracted arrangements to effectively weaken Putin.
Russia is still among the world’s largest producers of both oil and natural gas. But as conventional reserves decline and production gets more expensive, Russia badly needs Western technology to maintain oil production and control costs by using modern drilling techniques and tapping into its unconventional and offshore resources. Though Moscow rallies against hydraulic fracturing in Europe, Russia already is the second-largest market outside North America for fracking (China is first).