Energy and Cooperation
The quest for long-term energy supplies is becoming a matter of increasing regional competition with secure access to oil and gas a matter of national strategic consideration. The project focuses on the issue of energy and cooperation in Northeast Asia and Central Asia. Political entities in Northeast Asia, namely China, Japan, North and South Korea and Taiwan are acting to secure long-term energy supplies. Russia and the Central Asian states, on the other hand, have a significant proportion of the world's primary energy resources and want to increase such exports.
The project analyses both the theoretical and broad policy context within which energy security policies are placed among Central and Northeast Asian governments. For import countries, energy security can be understood as the availability of energy at all times, in various forms, in sufficient quantities, and at affordable prices. For export countries, energy security translates into the certainty of market demand in terms of quantity at predictable prices. It also examines the possibility of transforming an issue that could potentially cause regional friction, especially in Northeast Asia, into one of opportunity for cooperation and common benefit.
Energy policy deserves particular attention because a better understanding of the energy security rationale of Central and Northeast Asian actors would enable us to better understand the politics of these regions. The question of energy cooperation is in this context important as multilateral energy cooperation could create permanent relations of mutual engagement and cooperative interdependence thus mitigating the potential of violent conflict in these regions.
The value of this research lies in the potential application of the research findings in promoting regional stability through multilateral cooperation at a time when countries are facing growing energy scarcity in the face of increasing and competing energy demands. The project would tap the opinions of scholars and policy-makers from the Central and Northeast Asian regions in order to produce recommendations that would be politically acceptable and of practical application to the region.
The Program for Contemporary Silk Road Studies being the first research and policy unit in Northern Europe focusing exclusively on contemporary issues in the ancient Silk Road area incorporating North East Asia is in an exceptional position to conduct such research because it is perceived to be non-threatening outsider with no hidden agendas in the Central and Northeast Asian regions. It is therefore able to create a neutral and conducive environment and attract illustrious scholars and policy-makers from these regions to engage and collaborate on the issue of energy security in a constructive manner.
On a general level, the result of this research also has wide appeal outside conflict management circles because of its implications on the environment, safety, economic, social and security concerns which are of academic, political and commercial interest.
The main issues to be explored and analyzed are:
. The uncertainties related to energy supplies for energy importing countries;
. The interaction between exporting and importing countries and the rivalry between importing states for supplies;
. The possibility of transforming an issue that could potentially cause friction into one of opportunity for multilateral cooperation and common benefit.
This project is part of the by the Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs funded research on Conflict and Security in Asia.
Energy & Cooperation in Northeast Asia (ECNA)
Energy & Cooperation in Central Asia (ECCA)
CENTRAL ASIA (ECCA)
NORTHEAST ASIA (ECNA)
Dr. Niklas L. P. Swanström
Dr. Svante E. Cornell
Amb. Ingolf Kiesow
Christopher Len, Project Coordinator
Prof. Kent Calder (USA)
Prof. Gennady Chufrin (Russia)
Prof. Arthur Shuhfan Ding (Taiwan)
Ambassador Ingolf Kiesow (Sweden)
Prof. Kyongsoo Lho (South Korea)
Assoc. Prof. Zha Daojiong (China)
Additional partners will be listed shortly.
The Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs (Utrikesdepartementet)