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Energy security in China's capitalist transition : import dependence, oil diplomacy, and security imperatives

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Title:Energy security in China's capitalist transition : import dependence, oil diplomacy, and security imperatives
Authors:Wu, Kang
Storey, Ian
LC Subject Headings:Energy policy - China
Petroleum industry and trade - China
National security - China
Date Issued:2008
Publisher:London: New York: Routledge
Citation:Wu, Kang and Ian Storey. 2008. Energy security in China's capitalist transition: import dependence, oil diplomacy, and security imperatives. In China's emergent political economy: Capitalism in the dragon's lair, ed. Christopher A. McNally, 190-208. London and New York: Routledge.
Abstract:The People's Republic of China (PRC) had been a net energy exporter since the 1960s. In 1993, however, China became a net oil importer. Largely as a result of China's capitalist transition, China's thirst for energy resources has continued to grow massively in recent years. This is deepening the country's energy import dependence, which in turn is changing many aspects of China's energy markets and accelerating China's integration with the rest of the world. However, with higher dependence on energy imports, particularly imports of oil, energy security has emerged as a top issue for the Chinese leadership. Indeed, the exigencies of energy security have come to influence the conduct of China's foreign relations. There are in general four dimensions of energy security. The first is the economic dimension. Energy security means smoothly securing adequate supplies of energy efficiently and at the lowest cost. This requires governments to have an energy policy that is transparent and reduces barriers to the efficient operation of markets. The second is the geopolitical dimension. Promoting energy security means that oil or energy diplomacy plays a key role in a country's foreign policies. The third is the national security and military dimension. Energy security can be an important component in formulating a country's national security and defense policies. The final is the environmental dimension. To manage energy consumption while simultaneously protecting the environment and avoiding ecological degradation, any country, particularly a large and fast growing developing country like China, faces huge challenges. The purpose of this chapter is twofold. First, we will analyze the nature and seriousness of China's energy vulnerabilities, especially rising dependence on energy imports. Second, we will examine the economic, geopolitical, and, to a lesser extent, military dimensions of the dilemmas shaping China's energy security. Unfortunately, a detailed analysis of the environmental issues associated with energy security is beyond the scope of this chapter, though these issues will be touched on.
Pages/Duration:p. 190-208 pages
Appears in Collections: Wu, Kang

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