At the seventh Conference of Parties in Marrakech (COP 7) a consensus was reached on the rules, the modalities and the guidelines of the flexibility mechanisms of the Kyoto Protocol. In this paper we assess the outlook and potential of one of the flexibility mechanisms, viz. joint implementation (JI) between the European Union and Russia. We show that both parties have all the incentives to start working on JI and we assess the biggest obstacle for implementing JI. © 2003 Elsevier Science Ltd. All right reserved.