Last month our team anticipated that the Ukrainian crisis would provide the conditions for a jolt. Due to lack of space and because this jolt is much more evident in the rest of the world, we tried to identify the reasons for this jolt to only from a European perspective. But this month we are going to take a closer look at the consequences of the phenomenal acceleration of all the “world afterwards ” structural trends which have long been at work.
After nearly 6 years of blocking the normal development of systemic transition, a blocking caused by a flood of dollars leading to a renewed artificial global addiction to the US dollar, history is now taking its course. It isn’t as if during these six years nothing has happened. On the one hand, the US has failed to relaunch its economy (a process now made visible by the -1% US growth made public at the end of May) and the actual situation for Americans has only got worse (private debt, pensions, cities,…); and on the other, the emerging nations have used – and contributed to creating – this “pause” to prepare themselves for the ultimate and inevitably painful stages of completing the crisis which we are now approaching.
The Ukrainian crisis and the characteristic aggression against the legitimate interests of one of the major players in the emerging multipolar world, Russia, as well as the US’ attempted annexation of Europe, have blown the whistle for the end of the game. The whole world has thus realized that the US was on its last legs, henceforth dangerous and that it had become urgent to move on. Moreover, some no longer have a choice, beginning with the Russians who are forced to lay the foundations of a vast global geopolitical reconfiguration by signing the famous gas supply agreement with China, this new energy supply route which changes everything and to which we will come back later.
We are going to examine the drivers and characteristics of this major reconfiguration on three regions: Asia, the Middle East and Europe, and finally propose avenues for reflection on the need to think about the interregional relations of tomorrow.
[…] ASIA – WHAT THE RUSSIAN-CHINESE GAS DEAL CHANGES
But for now let’s take a closer look at the consequences of the Russian-Chinese gas deal.
First of all this deal, which envisages the start-up of a gas pipeline from 2018, makes Russian gas extremely competitive throughout the whole of Asia which until now has depended on liquid gas supplies by sea (LNG), whose transport costs drive prices upwards. It’s hardly surprising that, henceforth, Japan will ignore diplomatic reticence and get closer to the Russians and Chinese in the hope of getting a small extension of the pipeline to its own territory.
Since Fukushima and the shutting down of all its nuclear reactors, Japan has seen its trade balance fall into the red due to energy imports. Cheaper gas would obviously be welcome.
For the whole of Asia the arrival of a direct Russian-Chinese gas pipeline allows