While EU Institutions and Member States mobilize their resources to achieve the green transition goals, new elites are emerging. The increasing flow of renewable energy-related investment funds and EU-wide drive toward competitive market mechanism attracts the capital holders, private financial institutions The dominant position of state-controlled vertically integrated undertakings is being challenged, dynamically reshaping the structure of the power relations within the energy sector. Three crucial tendencies can be distinguished: green transition, liberal centralization of the market, and continuous transnationalization of capital. Simultaneously, third countries, such as Russian Federation and People’s Republic of China, directly or indirectly participate in the energy market to fulfil their geopolitical goals within the energy sector. Visegrad Group countries, historically and politically dependent, both from the Varieties of Capitalism perspective and energy-wise, from fossil fuel imports, are dynamically restructuring their power generation mix, becoming and fascinating entanglement of emerging and decaying political, economic and social elites.
The research material consists of in-depth interviews with representatives of the Visegrad Group energy sector elites: National Regulatory Authorities and Transmission System Operators, as well as wholesale traders and domiant suppliers, active on the energy market. The crucial audiences, capital conversions and strategies of crucial energy market actors are analyzed in the context of continuous institutional evolution within the EU green transition legal framework. Actors skillfully balance between practices of capital conversion, providing an opportunity to accumulate the different types of capital, and legitimization of their position within the energy sector.
The qualitative research material is supplemented by quantitative analysis of overlapping position and relational graphs of the dominant undertaking within the Visegrad Group energy sector. Networks analysis help to identify complex relations, narrowing the gap between technical, political, economic, and legal approaches. The obtained results allow to position the dynamics of the energy field in the wider context of changes within Visegrad financial markets.