Research Paper: Africa's Petroleum and China's Economic

Pages: 25 (7994 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1+  ·  Level: Master's  ·  Topic: Energy  ·  Buy This Paper

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[. . .] The world oil market has recorded important trends. The global demand for oil is projected to grow by more than five percent by 2030 with the Middle East, China, and India accounting for seventy percent of the increase. China's oil demand is anticipated to expand during this period, and oil imports will grow. This implies that China will overtake the United States thereby becoming the largest world net importer of oil by 2020 (Bhaumik, 2009). It will reach approximately twenty-four million barrels daily net oil consumption by 2030. This suggests that nearly eighty percent of China's oil consumption will rely on imported oil. However, United States oil demand will decline or remain unchanged; thus, its oil imports are subject to fall to the extent that North Americans will become the largest producer of oil by 2030. With the rising oil production in the U.S., by 2020, the U.S. is anticipated to become the largest global producer of oil. The demand for oil is likely to peak just before 2020, and by 2030, it will be almost 14 million barrels per day, lower (Peterson, 2007). This decline is equal to the current Norway and Russia oil production combined, easing the pressure for new developments and discoveries.

Two Different Views of China's Engagement in Africa

China's extending involvement with Africa has made a serious debate around universal observers, pundits, and policymakers. The center of the argument lies in how to assess China's emerging role in Africa's development. Another challenge is how to respond to China's diverse ways or shows through which China creates consolidated multilateral and bilateral relations with numerous African nations. There are two opposing perspectives concerning the China-Africa oil ties. The "negative side" disapproves and opposes China's model. The positive side upholds the supportive perspective and appraises China's approach to secure African oil (Platten, 2004). The negative side underscores that the operations of China's oil organizations in Africa threaten Western interests, cause different new issues, and increase the existing baffling challenges in African oil-processing nations. Most promoters of the negative side are U.S. policymakers, universal observers, critics, and experts in environmental protection and human rights NGOs who see China as a danger to the Western world (Resende & Cote, 2008).

Defenders of the negative side look after four fundamental contentions. First, China's acquisition of African oil is a threat to Western oil interests, yet it erodes their impact on Africa, particularly America's authority. A few investigators accept that the African continent has now turned into an indispensable arena of geopolitical and strategic rivalry for old and new faces. This is because it is the most promising world regions for future oil manufacturing. China's pursuit of Africa's oil might undermine American oil interests in the region (Cheung & Haan, 2013).

Some U.S. government reports note that China is adhering to a mercantilist strategy, attempting to lock up oil supplies worldwide by looking for close ties with major oil manufacturers, incorporating Angola and Sudan. China's oil diplomacy in Africa is challenging U.S. foreign approach, security, and economic concerns. Iran Taylor, an African-China expert, contends that China's oil pursuit in Africa is inciting concern in Western capitals and China's defined concentration on African oil is possibly dangerous. China's policy is grounded in the desire to circumvent overreliance on the worldwide oil market. It intends to achieve this through either truly obtaining major stakes in Africa's oil fields or to defend access to them (Mackinder, 2009).

Since Chinese oil organizations are state-owned, China's quest for oil abroad might have less to do with Beijing's energy security than with other long-term factors. Since the upsurge in Chinese oil diplomacy, the first prerequisite of Chinese strategists is the long-term objective of being accountable for oil resources at their source to empower them to control future prices. China's deliberations do not look favorable for the U.S. government. Although China's chase for African resources is not an immediate danger to U.S. energy security, it is a risk to different U.S. interests across the continent. For instance, it will harm the battle against terrorism and proliferation of nuclear weapons. Second, the negative side contends that the nature of China's oil extension in Africa is neo-colonialism. Some high governmental officials and Western journalists have made charges on Chinese neo-colonialism in Africa. For instance, former British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw expressed in 2006 that China was doing what they (Britons) had done in Africa in the past one hundred and fifty years (Friedberg, 2011). In addition, the then U.S. Secretary Clinton expressed that they would prefer not to see another colonialism rise in Africa. Consistent with the criticisms, China's chase for Africa's oil is not based on moral and fair methodologies. It is premised on exploitation and extending African reliance on China. Some have portrayed China's activities as unbridled loot of African raw materials and natural resources driven by thin business interest.

The negative notion considers the operations of China's oil organizations in Africa as having undermined Western deliberations to market exceptional services and enhancing human rights in Africa, weakening the rise of an international regime, and harming the local environment. China's oil organizations work in some problematic and unstable nations like Sudan and Angola, which have recorded intense violations of human rights violations and corruption. Evidently, China has currently embraced a discourse in Africa that successfully legitimizes human rights violations and undemocratic practices under the pretense of state power and non-obstruction. China's exertions do not look good for African democratic system, which worst-case scenario, complicate African and U.S. exertions to respect human rights and generate good governance in the continent. Different observers criticized that China's movements, incorporating China's oil purchases and sale of arms, have escalated the unstable scenario of Africa. A few experts have scrutinized the negative impacts of Chinese venture on Africa's local setting and communities, impacts that have showed up in a few instances of resource exploitation and extraction of timber.

The negative side upholds that governmental aid for China's oil organizations through oil negotiations, foreign aid, finance, and concerted government approach is not fair to Western oil organizations competing for acreage in Africa (Hwang, 2008). A few investigators have called attention that China has sought after Africa's oil by offering coordinated aid bundles. For instance, to get oil deals, China enlarged expansive oil-sponsored loans, helped train employees, and build infrastructure. Similarly, a financial approach concentrating on augmenting its business investment is the driving component of China's engagement with petroleum generating states. A few observers accept that China has an extensive energy approach and uniquely coordinated policies to back the operations of China's oil organizations in Africa. In fact, it has developed a grand strategy to acquire a majority share of Africa's oil accounts because of the numerous Chinese high-level official visits to Africa.

On the contrary, numerous policymakers and intellectuals in China and Africa, numerous energy exporters and some worldwide observers take an alternate stance: the positive side. The positive side touts the potential for expanding the global oil supply by the practices of China's oil organizations in some unstable oil-handling nations in Africa, which in the meantime helps push Africa's improvement and make economic opportunities for China and oil-manufacturing nations. For instance, while some are condemning of China for looking for selective access to oil and gas supplies in Africa, others acclaim Beijing's eagerness to risk entering into markets where some Western energy firms cannot strive for various reasons, seemingly adding to global energy supplies, bringing down costs, and profiting customers. Positive advocates contend four fundamental points.

China's oil organizations' abroad ventures in oil fields are expanding the world oil supply, helping stabilize the worldwide oil business, alleviating the upward force of oil costs, and enhancing worldwide oil security. Not all of these should be considered a danger to American interests. Some experts contend that the expansion of China's oil organizations has positive effects on worldwide oil markets by pumping oil abroad, particularly in oil fields in which different organizations are unable or unwilling to invest (Ma, 2010). Further, Chinese oil organizations are driven essential by profits and reserves, which is as same as global oil organizations and their practices are not a risk to American energy security. A few experts have challenged the presence of a U.S.- Chinese race or a "New Scramble" in Africa and the hugeness of U.S. -- Chinese competition or, a business race for Africa's resources (Scerri & Lastres, 2013).

Moreover, experts have underlined that African nations have a tendency to be in the driving seat today and will independently lure the fancied external sources of investment and political backing. Chinese investments and loans specifically have opened new policy alternatives to African leaders. Undoubtedly, most Chinese scholars and officials concede that China's oil organizations have no competitive advantage over global oil organizations in Africa, whether in international operating experiences or technology. They additionally respect Chinese oil organizations' engagement with Africa as handy for China and Africa's oil-manufacturing nations (Lensey, 2007).

According to the positive side,… [END OF PREVIEW]

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