• 2017-05-09

    Investing for Energy Productivity in the GCC: Financing the Transition

    An unprecedented infrastructure investment boom occurred in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) in the first part of the 21st century. Strong public capital spending supported by high energy prices provided governments with an opportunity to accelerate economic diversification and infrastructure investment, lifting economic growth and per-capita incomes. The 2014 collapse in oil prices created an added impetus for a transition to a more sustainable growth model, less dependent on volatile energy markets. Given that GCC governments face a constrained fiscal environment and low domestic energy prices remain in place for consumers, we suggest that policymakers consider a market-based 'negabarrel' program to stimulate energy productivity investment. A 'negabarrel' program on the scale of around USD 100 billion across the GCC implemented over 10 years could incentivize private sector investment, generate around 800,000 to 1.2 million new jobs and increase government revenue, if a robust energy service company (ESCO) market can be established. Implementation programs, such as super-ESCOs, need careful planning, but can deliver substantial economic benefits and employment opportunities for GCC citizens in the area of energy auditing and management.

  • 2017-05-09

    Energy Productivity as a New Growth Model for GCC Countries

    The evidence from an international Kuznets curve analysis conducted for this study suggests that greater economic value and per-capita income is possible along a high energy productivity growth pathway. Setting national energy productivity targets would provide a powerful signal on the future direction of government policies and increase transparency to monitor adn evaluate progress. While many advanced economies show strong evidence of having successfully decoupled economic growth from energy consumption along a high energy productivity pathway, GCC countries exhibit this trait only weakly, if at all.

  • 2017-05-09

    Energy Relations and Policymaking in Asia

    Energy security is not a new topic for policymakers in Northeast Asia (NEA). The paradigm usually adopted by both researchers and policymakers has been to view energy security as an asymmetric risk. Energy suppliers worry about security of demand; energy consumers worry about security of supply and often about diversity of supply. Our premise is that it is time to replace this paradigm with a new one. Policymakers can, by adopting a broader view, use these energy relations to reinforce mutual interdependence between economies and reduce the risk asymmetries. These ideas were discussed in a series of workshops held in the GCC and NEA throughout 2015. The result was a collection of papers from 16 different collaborating research institutions on a range of perspectives, with four main themes: the consequences of trade and connectivity, domestic policies, energy security, and energy and the environment. These collected papers are published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2016, under the title Energy Relations and Policy Making in Asia.

  • 2017-05-09

    2016 Global Food Policy Report

    The Global Food Policy Report is IFPRI’s flagship publication. This year’s annual report examines major food policy issues, global and regional developments, and commitments made in 2016, and presents data on key food policy indicators. The report also proposes key policy options for 2017 and beyond to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. In 2016, the global community made major commitments on sustainable development and climate change. The global food system lies at the heart of these commitments—and we will only be able to meet the new goals if we work to transform our food system to be more inclusive, climate-smart, sustainable, efficient, nutrition- and health-driven, and business-friendly.

  • 2017-05-09

    Africa, and China’s One Belt, One Road initiative: Why now and what next?

    China’s growing outbound investment ambitions could be as transformative for today’s poor countries as inbound investment was for China. This will depend upon how recipient developing economies, in particular in Africa, utilise China’s investor interest for their own sustainable development.

  • 2017-05-07

    The Diplomacy of Promoting Cooperation on Energy and Resources under the “Belt and Road” Initiative

    The “Belt and Road” Initiative (BRI) is a strategic conception for deepening economic, social, cultural and various other modes of cooperation between China and countries in regions to the west and south of China. Its key features are openness and inclusiveness, and it relies heavily on infrastructure and creative collaboration. This article focuses on energy and resources cooperation, which may greatly strengthen the mutually beneficial relations between countries and should be given priority in implementing the BRI. It also suggests three approaches for China to promote energy and resources cooperation under the framework of BRI: First, China should plan and manage major-country relationships with countries such as Russia, India and the United States by deepening energy strategic partnership and promoting large projects cooperation. Second, China should further strengthen its relationships with countries and international mechanisms in Central Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and Middle East region. Third, China should endeavor to build a favorable international environment by fostering favorable international public opinions for energy and resources cooperation among countries along the Belt and Road.

  • 2017-05-01

    Inclusive globalization: unpacking China's “Belt and Road” Initiative

    China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is a call for an open and inclusive model of cooperative economic, political and cultural exchange that draws on the deep-seated meanings of the ancient Silk Roads. While it reflects China’s rise as a global power, and its industrial redeployment, increased outward investment and need to diversify energy sources and routes, the BRI involves the establishment of a framework for open cooperation and new multilateral financial instruments designed to lay the infrastructural and industrial foundations to secure and solidify China’s relations with countries along the Silk Roads and to extend the march of modernization and poverty reduction to emerging countries.