EU Commissioner Competition Gazprom EU Commissioner/Wikton Dabkowski/Flickr

L'Europa contro Gazprom

NEW YORK – Per anni il presidente russo Vladimir Putin ha usato la dipendenza dell'Europa dal gas naturale come un'arma di politica estera senza temere che l'Unione europea lo costringesse a scoprire le carte in tavola. Oggi, però, la musica è cambiata. Con il lancio di un'azione antitrust contro il gigante russo del gas Gazprom, l'Europa ha fatto capire a chiare lettere di non sentirsi più minacciata dalla brutalità di Putin come una volta.

Il messaggio che arriva dal Commissario europeo per la concorrenza – cioè che le regole del mercato valgono per tutti – è stato ignorato da Putin per anni, grazie alla possibilità di contare su mezzi economici e legali per raggiungere i suoi obiettivi politici che da tempo caratterizza il suo governo. Oltre un decennio fa, il Cremlino espropriò la Yukos Oil, che all'epoca copriva il 20% della produzione russa, condannandone il fondatore, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, che aveva osato opporglisi, a una pena detentiva di dieci anni con l'accusa infondata di evasione fiscale.

In seguito, tutte le principali aziende che formano la struttura economica del paese, perlopiù basata sull'energia, si conformarono politicamente consentendo a Putin di usare le esportazioni di petrolio e gas come un manganello geopolitico. I paesi dell'Ue che non poteva minacciare sul fronte militare per via della Nato furono corteggiati a suon di sconti, o puniti con vertiginosi aumenti dei prezzi.

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