Taking Steps to Enhance Energy Security

  • 25 December 2014

The decisions taken and recommendations made at the Arab Energy Conference – held in Abu Dhabi under the patronage of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan (may God protect him) – undoubtedly represent a clear road map for the future. These recommendations outline what should be done to speed up the enactment of new laws and regulations governing Gulf and Arab initiatives in energy. Changes could be brought about in the realm of alternative energy and nuclear energy for peaceful purposes besides new exploration and adopting green economy.

While the roadmap came just in time to stimulate individual and collective action on sustainable energy, considering the present geo-economic variables and relative decline in oil prices. The UAE in collaboration with the General Secretariat of Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries and Arab Fund for Economic and Social Development, and in coordination with Arab League and Arab Industrial Development and Mining Organization, has made maximum efforts to implement recommendations compatible with changes in conventional, renewable and alternative energy and environmental conditions that have become a cause for worry all over the world.

The papers presented and recommendations made at the conference did not ignore the importance of a clear policy to rationalize energy consumption and inviting stakeholders to work on energy reforms. They also discussed domestic market pricing policy, taking into account real cost of production to reduce excessive consumption, as well as acquisition of cutting-edge technologies that enable Arab countries to exploit maximum potential, given that they possessunconventional oil and gas resources. This was besides the need to speed up grid connection between Gulf countries and discussing technological developments and their impact on this important sector.

On the subject of fixing oil prices, the conference called for the need to strengthen and intensify cooperation among all the major parties concerned with oil and natural gas in terms of producers, consumers and investors. The objective was to agree on a roadmap which will eventually lead to the creation of favorable environment for stability of markets at affordable prices for all parties. This will also encourage investors in relevant industries and ensure security for all.

The point of contention across the world today is adequate investment for the development of energy sector in Arab countries. After reviewing the problems facing investors in the energy sector, the conference recommended that governments and other decision-makers should show commitment toward improving conditions to stimulate investors and create an enabling business environment. An example of this is the trend of strengthening price incentives for investors in natural gas exploration and development in a transparent matter.

The ECSSR recognizes the importance of energy for the UAE and the region. From 1995, when it held the first Energy Conference, to the 20th Annual Conference Energy held on November 18 last year, the Center has been closely monitoring energy security developments, geopolitics and political geography in order to build a long-term strategy for producers and consumers. It takes into account the potential and unforeseen variables with the aim of achieving security in the field of energy, which is necessary now more than ever.