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International Energy Policy: The Conflict of Investment Needs and Market Signals

I am delighted to have the privilege to welcome you to this, our sixth annual North American Conference, here in San Francisco today. By some curious coincidence we have elected to meet on the very day, November 6th, when in the United States you are making the most important world leadership decision of the decade. Today, the rest of the world will be watching to see whether the U.S. electorates will endorse, inter alia, the deregulation of oil and gas and the underlying reliance on market forces to produce acceptable energy solutions for national security.Energy security, then, and the role of government is the theme I have chosen today, as I believe it still lies very much at the heart of the current energy debate. Can our energy systems survive and prosper? To what extent are volatile markets or irresponsible governments likely to mess them up? In this I conclude that, while on resource and production cost grounds, the Arabian Gulf still presents a neglected opportunity and Western Europe a neglected risk, the greatest danger lies in the United States' imposing its highly market-oriented energy logic on the rest of the world.

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Energy Specializations: Energy Investment and Finance – Public and Private Risks, Risk Management

JEL Codes: Q40: Energy: General, Q42: Alternative Energy Sources, Q35: Hydrocarbon Resources

Keywords: Oil and gas deregulation, US, government policy

DOI: 10.5547/ISSN0195-6574-EJ-Vol6-No2-2

Published in Volume 6, Number 2 of the bi-monthly journal of the IAEE's Energy Economics Education Foundation.


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