An interesting new research
evaluates the state of worldwide energy security.
The G7 economies of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, UK and USA according to the study are at ‘high risk’ in the short-term, whilst China and countries from the oil producing MENA region are highlighted as facing increasing challenges in the future.
The Energy Security (short-term) Index has been developed by Maplecroft to identify the countries most vulnerable to shocks in energy supplies and price fluctuations in the international market on timescale of days to months. It assesses immediate risks to the availability, affordability and continuity of energy supplies in 196 countries by evaluating energy imports, diversity of supplies, import security and energy costs.
Only three countries, Sierra Leone (1), Gambia (2) and Guinea Bissau (3), are categorised as ‘extreme risk’ in the short-term index. However, a further 122 nations are rated ‘high risk,’ including the G7 economies of Italy (13), Japan (73), UK (90), Germany (104), France (107) and the USA (112).
Recent instability in the MENA region and the impact of increased crude oil prices has highlighted the dangers of an economy heavily dependent on imported fuels from a specific region. “Rising fuel prices in response to the political turmoil in the MENA region in early 2011 have shown that energy security is of paramount importance,” states Maplecroft CEO, Alyson Warhurst. “Many countries are greatly reliant on imported oil and gas from these regimes. In order to support economic growth and energy demands, they will need to diversify energy supplies by increasing import partners and expanding domestic production and renewable energy sources.”