Regional and International Perspectives
Chapter 2: Multilateral, regional and bilateral energy trade governance
The of energy is changing: on the supply side, the US is now one of the major energy suppliers; on the demand side, traditionally, oil moved from the East to the West and money travelled from the West to the East. This is now changing with the rise of emerging markets, which are increasingly in need of higher levels of energy consumption for their rapidly growing economies (especially China and India) and partly due to the fact that less efficient economies require more energy. Moreover, the EU is growing economically less than it was before the 2008 economic crisis and increasingly uses less fossil fuel as part of its energy mix, which also explains why there is a shift to the East in energy consumption. To contextualize this chapter, a further fact worth mentioning is that the current international energy trade governance system is fragmented and multilayered. Streamlining it for greater legal cohesiveness and international political and economic cooperation would promote global energy security.The current chapter explores three levels of energy trade governance: multilateral, regional and bilateral. Most energy-rich countries are part of the multilateral trading system, which is institutionalized by the World Trade Organization (WTO). Regionally, for the sake of brevity, we will focus on five major regional agreements and their energy-related aspects. When it comes to bilateral energy trade governance, and again for the sake of brevity, this chapter will only address the European Union’s bilateral energy trade relations.In Section II, we will analyse the multilateral energy trade...
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