Rentier states: Interaction between economy and politics

Rentier states:
Interaction between economy and politics

Kazantzev A.A.,

MGIMO University, Moscow, Russia; HSE University, Moscow, Russia,

elibrary_id: 123521 | ORCID: 0000-0002-4845-1391 | RESEARCHER_ID: H-2728-2016

Lebedev S.V.,

Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (RANEPA), Moscow, Russia,

elibrary_id: 1042903 |

Medvedeva S.M.,

MGIMO University, Moscow, Russia,

elibrary_id: 639897 | ORCID: 0000-0001-6231-0491 | RESEARCHER_ID: AAT-9251-2020

DOI: 10.17976/jpps/2022.02.12

For citation:

Kazantzev A.A., Lebedev S.V., Medvedeva S.M. Rentier states: Interaction between economy and politics. – Polis. Political Studies. 2022. No. 2. P. 159-173. (In Russ.).

This work was supported by grant from IIS of MGIMO University No. 1921-01-03


This article is dedicated to the interdisciplinary concept of rentier state or government that finances itself via oil and gas export rather than by taxes. This concept is equally important to political economy and to IR theory. The extraction of oil rent impacts the politics and public administration of rentier states and affects their foreign policy. The article argues that although initially the concept had more of an economic undertone, in modern conditions it is first of all a political concept. The authors show that a rentier state has specific domestic and foreign policy parameters. The main internal political and foreign policy patterns in rentier states are closely linked: the ruling regime seizes control of the oil and gas sector as the main resource of the country, secures its stability through this, and turns it into a balancing tool in foreign policy. Based on the political economy criteria identified, a list of 16 rentier states has been drawn up (all the patterns outlined in this paper apply to them). The group includes the following states: Iraq, Kuwait, Libya, Angola, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Azerbaijan, Venezuela, Qatar, UAE, Algeria, Iran, Kazakhstan, Brunei Darussalam, Nigeria and Turkmenistan. A transitional group was also identified, in which individual patterns may operate. 

rentier state, resource rent, energy strategy, authoritarian regime, sultanistic regime, personalist regime, OPEC, nationalization, oil & gas industry.


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Content No. 2, 2022

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