Energy investments in the Belt and Road Initiative

Authors: Max Woodworth*, The Ohio State University
Topics: China, Energy, Asia
Keywords: China, BRI, energy, Eurasia
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/12/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Room: Regent, Marriott, River Tower Elevators, 4th Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The Belt and Road Initiative’s stated goal is to “maintain an open world economic system, and achieve diversified, independent, balanced, and sustainable development” and also raise a “Chinese proposal to advance regional cooperation.” This paper addresses energy as a crucial part of the BRI program. This domain of the BRI is strategically vital but is also remarkably opaque and uncoordinated due to China’s fragmented energy sector and divisive debates within the central government over energy security. Specifically, this paper develops a clearer picture of energy investments and the BRI’s intention to generate pan-regional energy infrastructure and facilities integration. Though still early days for the BRI, the paper identifies key challenges for the rollout of an integrated regional development policy for energy and suggests ways that these challenges are also present in other domains of the BRI.

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