The Russian Oil Economy
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The Russian Oil Economy

Jennifer I. Considine and William A. Kerr

In this unique work, Jennifer Considine and William Kerr contend that while OPEC currently dominates the international oil market, Russia will be a key player in the future international energy market. Indeed, Russia’s petroleum resources rival those of Saudi Arabia. More than almost any other industry, future performance is often determined by the influence of decisions made in the past. This book provides a detailed history of the development of the Russian oil economy in order to build up a comprehensive and discerning picture of its future role and significance in the global energy market of the 21st century.
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Chapter 4: An Industry Fit for a Superpower

Jennifer I. Considine and William A. Kerr

Extract

4. An Industry Fit for a Superpower 4.1 KRUSHCHEV’S SCHEMES Stalin’s death added a tremendous problem to the many others left unsolved while he was still alive. The dead tyrant’s successors knew that they could not govern as he had. Their personal security could not be achieved simply by the end of terror from above; it also required additional reforms to avoid a possible threat from the abused and oppressed masses. The dilemma that Stalin’s death presented was to determine what kind of reform the system could stand without being undermined. At what point would the reforms that were necessary to sustain the system begin to threaten it. (Kort, 1993, p. 23 1) Georgi Malenkov, the youngest of Stalin’s inner circle and a devout student of political intrigue, had prepared carefully for the struggle for personal power and domination that would consume all post-Stalin administrators. He moved quickly to assert control, claiming the top government and party positions, prime minister and senior party secretary, for himself. A close friend and co-conspirator, Lavrenti Beria (the chief of the secret police under Stalin) received two prominent, and complementary, appointments; Minister of the Interior and frst deputy prime minister. Viacheslav Molotov, a renowned Bolshevik and distinguished member of the Politburo, assumed the position of foreign minister. The three formed an uneasy alliance, a political triumvirate, which would succeed Stalin in the days immediately following his death. The new order was quickly discredited. According to Kort (1993, p. 233): On March 14, only nine...

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