Browsing: Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

  • When the United Nations General Assembly voted overwhelmingly on March 2 to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, African countries accounted for almost half of the 35 abstentions including South Africa.
  • The conflict triggered by Russia’s invasion has complicated the challenges and sources of stress already facing Southern Africa.
  • A few countries are sensing long-term growth opportunities from the crisis. Specifically, Africa’s natural gas could reduce Europe’s dependence on Russian energy.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has upended the existing world order and with it the global energy, production, distribution, and financial systems. Russia and China are openly challenging the Pax Americana. But the question of what the next world order will look like remains wide open.

On February 24, 2022, Russia launched a large-scale invasion of Ukraine, its neighbour to the southwest, marking a dramatic escalation of the Russo-Ukrainian War that began in 2014, Putin announced a “special military operation” in…

  • In reality, Russia’s assault on Ukraine will spark an African energy transformation, leapfrogging fossil fuel use in Africa and Europe.
  • Improved infrastructure is required to increase gas flows from Africa to Europe.
  • The European Union (EU) imported 155 billion cubic meters of natural gas from Russia in 2021, accounting for about 40 per cent of total EU gas consumption.
  • Solar energy can also scale up quickly, potentially outpacing plans to develop new liquefied natural gas ports.

Europe’s Energy crisis has been born from the European Union imposing sanctions on Russia. The EU imported 155 billion cubic meters of natural gas from Russia in 2021, accounting for about 40 per cent of total EU gas consumption.

Because of their persistent reliance on Russian oil and natural gas, Europe continues to support Putin’s economy – and, indirectly, his war machine – with hundreds of millions of Euros every day in return

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has led to a cocktail of sanctions that have put the energy supply in a precarious situation.

As a significant gas supplier to most of Europe, Russia faces sanctions that have seen oil prices go over US$100 per barrel. This is the highest price in eight years. With Europe currently in the middle of winter, energy requirements are a priority.

Russia supplies around 35% of the European Union’s energy needs. Ukraine accounts for one-third of Europe’s gas supplies, and there is concern that pipelines may be damaged in the fighting.

Read: Ukrainian businesses thriving in Africa despite racist treatment towards Africans in Europe

The road to self-sufficiency

The Ukraine/Russia crisis gives African energy producers such as Nigeria, Angola, Libya, and Algeria a chance to plug the supply gap. An increase in crude oil and gas prices would suit both sides.

Unfortunately, a lack of refineries in …