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Asia's Growing Interest in Hydrocarbons from the Americas: A Snapshot

Asia energy report

October 07, 2014

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As Asian nations grow both economically and demographically, their energy requirements continue to expand. A technology-driven revolution in energy development across the Western Hemisphere has amplified Asian interest in procuring energy resources from the Americas. From the Canadian oil sands to the Orinoco Belt, the Brazilian pre-salt, Vaca Muerta in Argentina, and numerous opportunities in between, Asian investment has exploded, led by but not limited to China. While numerous Asian nations are staking positions across the region, recent developments from China, Japan, and India in the hydrocarbons sector offer useful insights for analyzing the burgeoning energy relationship between Asia and the Western Hemisphere.

China’s primary interest in the Americas stems from a need to develop its own economy and Beijing’s recent engagement has primarily been economic. Japanese companies are looking for new opportunities in energy exploration and production, services, infrastructure, and transport. While India’s engagement in Latin American energy remains in its preliminary phase, prospects for increasing activity are quite good. 

Asia’s Growing Interest in Hydrocarbons from the Americas: A Snapshot explores these three case studies and concludes that Latin American countries should strengthen their regulatory and taxation frameworks to allow for a level playing field for the state and private actors that seek to invest in energy projects. Furthermore, they should also focus on ensuring rule of law to maximize certainty for projects.

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  • AS/COA's Energy Action Group (EAG) brings together the public and private sectors to develop strategic energy policies for the Americas. The EAG hosts forums in cities across the Americas and publishes working papers and recommendations on key energy and climate topics.

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