“Renationalizing” Yukos: Law and Control over Natural Resources in the Russian Economy

in Law and Capitalism

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print June 2008 | ISBN: 9780226525273
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226525297 | DOI:
“Renationalizing” Yukos: Law and Control over Natural Resources in the Russian Economy

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Russia's legal system deviates substantially from the systems that served as models for legal transplantation. Moreover, its political system, though in name a democracy, displays strong features of autocracy. This chapter shows that the Yukos episode is at the heart of the prolonged battle for control of Russia's vast natural resources in the post-Soviet era. In Soviet times these resources were owned and controlled by the state. After the collapse of the Soviet Union, the natural gas companies were consolidated into a single state-owned monopoly, Gazprom. Russia launched an aggressive mass privatization program at the end of 1992, but at first companies in the oil and gas sectors were not included. Officially, they remained under state control. With the weakening of state control in Russia during Boris Yeltsin's presidency, however, actual exercise of control rights was often usurped by other actors.

Keywords: Russia; legal system; political system; democracy; autocracy; Yukos; Soviet Union; Gazprom; privatization; Boris Yeltsin

Chapter.  8592 words. 

Subjects: Company and Commercial Law

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