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Sustainability 2010, 2(2), 475-493; doi:10.3390/su2020475

Reducing Energy Subsidies in China, India and Russia: Dilemmas for Decision Makers

1
Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI), PB 8159 Dep., 0033 Oslo, Norway
2
University of St. Andrews, St. Andrews, Fife KY16 9AJ, Scotland, UK
3
University of Tromso, 9037 Tromso, Norway
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 December 2009 / Accepted: 26 January 2010 / Published: 1 February 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Energy Policy and Sustainability)
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Abstract

This article examines and compares efforts to reduce energy subsidies in China, India and Russia. Despite dissimilarities in forms of governance, these three states have followed surprisingly similar patterns in reducing energy subsidies, characterised by two steps forward, one step back. Non-democratic governments and energy importers might be expected to be more likely to halt subsidies. In fact, the degree of democracy and status as net energy exporters or importers does not seem to significantly affect these countries’ capacity to reduce subsidies, as far as can be judged from the data in this article. Politicians in all three fear that taking unpopular decisions may provoke social unrest.
Keywords: energy subsidies; politics; China; India; Russia energy subsidies; politics; China; India; Russia
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Dansie, G.; Lanteigne, M.; Overland, I. Reducing Energy Subsidies in China, India and Russia: Dilemmas for Decision Makers. Sustainability 2010, 2, 475-493.

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