Olcott, senior associate with the Russian & Eurasian
Program at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, joined us for a
discussion about energy reserves in Central
Asia. The region is viewed as a viable alternative to the
Middle East, particularly for oil and natural
gas. Russia supplies a
sizeable portion of the European market for natural gas, but faces its own
energy deficit: its recent agreement with Turkmenistan illustrates a
willingness to pay a premium to monopolize access to reserves found there.
China too has forged new agreements
to research and develop oil pipelines that will supply their own growing
economy. How are Central Asian nations affected by Russia and China’s
energy agendas? Will competition amongst neighbors leave the US
behind? Will US efforts to acquire more energy from Central Asia lead to a declining emphasis on protecting US
strategic interests in the Gulf?