Policy Memos

Restructuring of the Russian Electricity Industry: The Proposed Breakup and the Lessons from Abro

Policy Memo:


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The Russian electricity industry is on the verge of fundamental change. Until now, electricity in Russia has been produced, transmitted, and distributed under the auspices of two main entities: Unified Energy System of Russia (UES), and the Ministry of Atomic Energy (Minatom). Minatom oversees Russia’s 30 civilian nuclear power plants, of which only 9 are fully operational. These nine plants account for roughly 16 percent of the country’s total annual electricity production of 815 billion kilowatt-hours. The percentage of electricity generated by nuclear power plants has been increasing in recent years as a result of the effort by Gazprom (the natural-gas monopoly) to emphasize exports and to cut back on the gas it provides for domestic consumption. Even so, fossil fuels and especially natural gas will likely remain the dominant source of electricity production. [...]


About the author

Director, Cold War Studies Program, and Senior Fellow, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies
Harvard University