Emergency oil stocks in Southeastern and Eastern Europe: What explains variation in convergence towards the EU model?
The accumulation and maintenance of emergency oil stocks in accordance with the requirements of the European Union involve changes in legislation, the strengthening of national stockholding institutions and the attraction of investment. Despite these challenges, almost all Southeastern and Eastern European countries have begun to align their oil stockholding arrangements with the European model, albeit there is variation in the actual degree of convergence. The greatest convergence is observed for Croatia and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. In marked contrast, the oil stockholding system of Moldova continues to be different from the European model. This study provides an overview of the Southeastern and Eastern European countries’ progress in approximating the European requirements for emergency oil stocks and identifies the factors responsible for the cross-country variation. The differences observed stem from the extent to which the countries are legally obliged to comply with the European provisions, their membership aspirations, levels of energy-related investment from the European Union, and dependence on oil imports.
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