Depletion of land hydrocarbon deposits in the Black Sea countries spurred the interest to oil and gas production in the shelf area of the Black Sea. Practically all Black Sea countries are persistent in their attempts to promote the projects on the development of the hydrocarbon potential of the Black Sea. Hydrocarbon resources are considered in the countries of this region as an important factor of energy security. The evolution of the policies of the Black Sea countries in hydrocarbon development, international cooperation, and problems faced by the Black Sea states in the development of the Black Sea shelf are considered. © Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015.