Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Why We Should Care About Ukraine

By Micah Halpern

I've Been Thinking:

Over the past week or so one of the most common questions asked of me on air and during lectures has been about the Ukraine and the role of Russia vis a vis the Ukraine.

More specifically, people are asking why we should care about what happens in the Ukraine. And they are asking if Russia is pulling a land grab.

My response is brief and to the point: Think energy natural gas and oil.

Since the crisis with Russia and the Ukraine, oil and natural gas prices have skyrocketed. The principle reason for the increase is that Russia is a major producer and refiner of oil and a producer of natural gas. And the Ukraine's largest export is oil.

Now that there is a threat of war between Russia and the Ukraine the market is talking. And the market is saying that any actions that put at risk the flow of oil and natural gas will drive up prices.

Because Russia is poised for war and has taken over Crimea, the price of energy has increased.

If that isn't enough of a reason for the West to care about what is happening with the Ukraine and Russia, I don't know what is.


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