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Tuesday, September 06, 2005

China, India and the US - the race for oil

It is clear that three countries, China, India and the US, will dominate the world for much of the 21st century, probably also joined by Brazil in a short while.

But what does it mean, to the rest of the world? Think thirst for oil, think dwindling resources, think rising prices, more poverty and may be war for resources. May be I am pessimistic here, and there is the hope that rising prices of traditional energy resources give way to sustained growth of alternative resources, but if not, what will happen? Is it enough to say that the world needs to adjust to the Chinese and Indian growth?

"Both of Asia's rising powers desperately need energy. China today imports roughly half its oil. Consumption rose by 15% last year and is forecast to jump by an additional 9% this year. By 2025, China will burn through 14.2 million barrels a day, double this year's level, the U.S. Energy Dept. predicts. India's oil imports are expected to rise to some 5 million barrels a day by 2020, from around 1.4 million barrels at present."

Simultaneously, the powers to be position themselves. CNOOC's plan to enter the US via an acquisition was smart, even so it failed. But there is more and the world is becoming a smaller place: "The Chinese are gaining ground in Russia. Last December both New Delhi and Beijing negotiated with Moscow as it sought financing for its $9 billion renationalization of Yuganskneftegaz, the core production subsidiary of the troubled oil major Yukos. Although neither Asian rival walked away with equity in the Russian company, the Chinese ended up lending the Russians $6 billion in return for guaranteed oil supplies at a bargain price. And in Angola last year, China Petrochemical Corp. (better known as SINOPEC) beat ONGC in bidding for an oil exploration block being sold by Shell Oil Co." This is just a short extract - read more in the article that I link to. It is exciting, and a bit scary!

(By Asia Business Consulting)