Browse our analysis section for news and articles on topics such as China's Belt and Road Initiative (OBOR), the world's evolving digital infrastructure competition, and the stakes for U.S. policy.
This series of case studies underscores the poor state of North Korea’s existing energy infrastructure, illustrates different models for delivering projects, and considers the strategic implications of different paths forward for the peninsula's energy connections.
This report, the third in a series on Chinese economic activities in the Western Balkans, provides recommendations for U.S. and partner responses to China's growing economic and political influence in the region and a “red flags” checklist to help identify activities that warrant further scrutiny.
The expansion of China’s Belt and Road Initiative in Central Asia suggests that Chinese manufacturers may soon become world leaders in wind energy with the help of government subsidies, Nikkei reports.
Xi Jinping's promise of carbon neutrality by 2060 will amount to little if his signature foreign policy vision, the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), continues exporting China’s environmental challenges globally. China’s poor environmental record abroad presents a strategic opportunity for the United States, if only Washington would seize it.
Pakistan's leading Taliban group has announced the reunification of several breakaway factions which experts believe could pose risks to Chinese-funded projects along the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor, including the Karakoram Highway Phase II, the Suki Kinari Hydropower Station, and the Havelian Dry Port, Nikkei reports.
Beijing has relaunched a $2 billion coal mine and power project in southeastern Pakistan amid rising tensions with Austalia, China's largest source of imported coal.
Japan will stop financing the construction of coal-fired power plants overseas in response to criticism of its backing for the carbon-intensive energy source as part of the country's push to build foreign infrastructure projects, Nikkei reports.
China, Pakistan and the Kohala Hydropower Company, a subsidiary of China Three Gorges Corporation, have signed a $2.4 billion deal for the construction of a 1,124-megawatt hydropower plant in disputed Kashmir, Nikkei reports.
Investment in renewable energy in Southeast Asia is holding up despite the economic pressure of the coronavirus pandemic, with many business buyers seizing chances to lock in low-cost power supplies for the long term, Nikkei reports.
To spur economic recovery from the COVID-19 recession, China has accelerated investment efforts in its infrastructure, technology, and manufacturing sectors, Nikkei reports.
Given the worsening global economy and recent foreign investment decreases in the Philippines, critics claim President Duterte's efforts to shut down domestic utilities and media companies on charges of corruption are economically unwise, Nikkei reports.
Beijing is pushing for what it calls Global Energy Interconnection, a vision of a multi-trillion-dollar worldwide electricity network, which presents an opportunity for emerging economies experiencing power shortages but also the risk of vulnerability and insecurity, Nikkei reports.
New legislation will allow Japan to support the construction of liquefied natural gas terminals across Asia, positioning Tokyo to take advantage of a rapidly growing LNG market, Nikkei reports.
President of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev is looking to carry out projects with Japan worth over $6 billion to establish closer bilateral relations in areas such as power generation and agriculture, Nikkei reports.
U.S. Exim Bank and Japan's state-backed Nippon Export and Investment Insurance have signed a deal enabling them to jointly mitigate export risks faced by Japanese-led energy and other infrastructure projects that have U.S. participation, Nikkei reports.
With a potential hydropower capacity of at least 40,000 megawatts from its Himalayan rivers, Nepal is looking to export some of its excess hydropower energy to its neighbors. However, rocky relations between Kathmandu and New Delhi, along with domestic unrest in Nepal have put these plans in doubt, Nikkei reports.
Vietnam's demand for energy has grown at 13 percent per year since 2000. Traditionally, Vietnam has satisfied this demand with electricity generated by coal and hydropower. Moving forward, Vietnam is seeking to attract investment in renewable energy infrastructure, such as wind and solar, Nikkei reports.
The China National Nuclear Corp. finished structural work for the Hualong One nuclear reactor in the Pakistani city of Karachi this June. Chinese President Xi Jinping hopes to install similar nuclear technology at more locations along the Belt and Road Initiative, with 30 units by 2030, which is estimated to create 5 million jobs and provide a total economic boost of $145 billion, Nikkei reports.
On Thursday, July 18, the CSIS Energy & National Security Program hosted a conference featuring keynote remarks by Frank Fannon, Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Energy Resources at the U.S. Department of State, and Senator Cory Gardner on engaging with Asia to develop mutually beneficial digital infrastructure and energy investment.
Supporters of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor have long argued that the initiative would spur development and improve Pakistan’s macroeconomic fortunes. As Pakistan faces its thirteenth IMF bailout in the last thirty years, it is clear that without serious reforms, the debt incurred to fund CPEC could do more economic harm than good.
Chinese and Russian enterprises signed roughly $20B in business deals in Moscow on Wednesday. Much of the deals focused on the energy sector and 5G mobile technology, reports the Nikkei Asian Review.
Jonathan Hillman joins Jane Nakano and Nikos Tsafos for the CSIS Energy and National Security Program's Energy 360° Podcast to look at the importance of energy projects in the BRI, changing expectations from BRI partners, and what defines a successful BRI.
The biggest commercial bank in Japan is one of the latest Asian lenders to consider a ban on funding for new coal-fired power stations. Asian banks are recognizing the global threat from climate change and pulling back financing for the world's most carbon-intensive energy source, Nikkei reports.
Over the next 15 years, more hard infrastructure is projected to be built around the world than currently exists. As our infrastructure is transformed, so will be the economies it fuels, the regions it connects, and the global commons it underpins. These trends are too powerful and potentially beneficial for the United States to stop, and too consequential to ignore.
China’s Global Energy Interconnection (GEI) initiative is an ambitious vision for transforming the global energy system that pairs a pitch for climate leadership with Beijing's industrial policy priorities. As China makes a play for green leadership in global energy governance, the U.S. needs to present a positive agenda of its own for the clean-energy transition.
Thailand's state-owned energy group PTT has earmarked around $4 billion for projects including pipelines and liquefied natural gas terminals over the next decade, supporting the government's efforts to diversify the country's coal-heavy energy supply. More gas-fired plants are also expected to be built to support Thailand's growing energy demand, reports the Nikkei Asian Review.
Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince, Mohammed bin Salman, promised to invest up to $100 billion in India's economy in the coming years, including in areas such as infrastructure, energy, and refining. The Crown Prince's visit to New Delhi follows a stop in neighboring Pakistan, where he signed $20 billion worth of investments in the country's flagging economy. The Crown Prince's next stop? Beijing.
Weeks after a meeting of government officials from Beijing and Islamabad, the environmental impact of China-led coal-fired power generation projects in Pakistan is still a hot topic of debate. Lack of disclosure on plans associated with $62 billion China Pakistan Economic Corridor, which forms a crucial part of Chinese President Xi Jinping's ambitious Belt and Road Initiative, is spurring local environmental concerns.
The world requires an interconnection agenda that focuses on multilateral institution-building and frames power trade as a tool for states to shore up grid systems in the renewables age.
It is clear that China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) carries important implications not only for the world’s water resources, but also for politics in BRI countries. One of the worst outcomes would be for it to exacerbate the growing number of local conflicts over shared, and often shrinking, water resources.
Saudi Arabia plans to set up a $10 billion oil refinery at Pakistan's Chinese-funded Gwadar port, according to a statement given by the Saudi energy minister. Pakistan's petroleum minister, Ghulam Sarwar Khan, has said that the project will make Saudi Arabia an important partner in the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor.
In 2017, China surpassed South Korea to become the world’s second-largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) importer. In a few years, it might overtake Japan. But how is China securing its LNG needs?
Three major Indonesian coal miners have announced plans to invest in renewable energy projects, as financing for coal power plants becomes increasingly difficult to obtain and renewables are decreasing in cost.
Tokyo Gas and China National Offshore Oil Corporation both partnered with Filipino companies to compete for the building of the Philippines' first liquefied natural gas terminal. Though Japan and China's leaders agreed to jointly advance third-country infrastructure projects, companies have not been able to shift from competition to collaboration in the field, reports the Nikkei Asian Review.
Indonesian state-owned oil and gas company Pertamina announced the signing of a $4 billion contract with two South Korean firms for a major upgrade of the Balikpapan refinery in East Kalimantan province, one of six mega refinery projects aimed at increasing Indonesia's fuel production capacity and reducing reliance on imports.
China envisions a vast global network of trade, investment, and infrastructure that will bring the world closer to Beijing. To better understand how China's vision is playing out on the ground, The New York Times examined nearly 600 Chinese-financed projects and the driving forces behind them, citing data from the Reconnecting Asia Project.
China is starting to build its largest offshore wind-power facility in the latest move in an accelerating shift in Asia away from solar to wind and other renewable energy sources.
A Japanese-led consortium of international banks will jointly lend $1.31 billion for a thermal power station in West Java, Indonesia fueled by liquefied natural gas.
Five years after the announcement of China's Belt and Road, the ambitious drive to build new infrastructure across Eurasia has produced a mixed track record on key issues such as its energy footprint, debt sustainability, and environmental impact.
As Asia continues to modernize and develop transportation infrastructure, its demand for electricity will continue to grow. Reconnecting Asia’s new dataset of over 11,000 power plants can help shed additional light on the region’s changing energy landscape.
China will contribute $3.6 billion to Turkey for infrastructure projects in order to expand its Belt and Road Initiative and mitigate the impact of Turkey's economic crisis.
The United States announced a $113 million package aimed at developing the Indo-Pacific region's digital economy, energy sector, and infrastructure.
Energy projects account for more than 60 percent of the roughly $62 billion in investment along the China-Pakistan Economic Corrdior. While CPEC's power plants have the potential to greatly increase access to electricity for Pakistan’s population, they could also pose serious risks to surrounding wildlife.
Vietnam plans to develop the largest solar plant in the ASEAN region, a 420-megawatt facility located in Tay Ninh in southwestern Vietnam. Talks are underway with several local and international financial institutions for project funding for the $420 million project.
Malaysia's Ministry of Finance is reviewing two gas pipeline projects worth $2.36 billion signed under the Najib administration, following the discovery that 88 percent of the money has been paid out despite only 13 percent of the work being completed.
Japan's infrastructure export ambitions face an uncertain future following a move by Japanese trading house Itochu to pull funding for the construction of a nuclear power plant in Turkey. Itochu's departure was driven by a sharp increase in safety-related costs following the Fukushima nuclear disaster, which caused the estimated total project cost to balloon from two to five trillion yen.
Kazakhstan and China have drafted 51 projects worth a total of $27 billion in the energy, mining, infrastructure and other sectors between 2016 and 2022.
Several local communities in rural Thailand have lobbied to block environmentally-damaging infrastructure projects backed by Chinese companies sparking similar actions across Southeast Asia.