China's Quest for Energy Security: Why are the Stakes so High?

7 Pages Posted: 1 Feb 2013

See all articles by ZhongXiang Zhang

ZhongXiang Zhang

Tianjin University - Ma Yinchu School of Economics

Date Written: January 31, 2013


China’s global quest for resources — in particular, oil and natural gas — has received unprecedented worldwide attention and scrutiny. The stakes are raised unnecessarily high mainly because of the growing politicization of Chinese energy security as a result of misconceptions and misunderstandings of China’s quest for energy security both inside and outside China. Inside China, these relate to the perceived US-led oil blockade against China and China’s illusion that its investments in oil fields overseas are able to help strengthen its energy security. Outside China, there are wide misconceptions and misunderstandings of how Chinese policy banks operate and their oil and natural gas-based loans. This paper seeks to clarify each of these points.

Keywords: energy security, global quest for resources, US-led oil blockade against China, Loan-for-oil and -gas deals, equity oil production, Chinese policy banks, going-out policies, national oil companies

JEL Classification: O13, O53, Q34, Q37, Q41, Q43, Q48

Suggested Citation

Zhang, ZhongXiang, China's Quest for Energy Security: Why are the Stakes so High? (January 31, 2013). Review of Environment, Energy and Economics (Re3), Forthcoming, Available at SSRN:

ZhongXiang Zhang (Contact Author)

Tianjin University - Ma Yinchu School of Economics ( email )

92 Weijin Road, Nankai District
Tianjin 300072
+86 22 87370560 (Phone)


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