Caspian Energy Initiative

Project
Archived
2011 - 2012

To help promote transparency and good governance in the energy sector in the Caspian region, we carried out a series of dialogues in Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan. The aim was to bring industry, government and civil society stakeholders together to discuss key issues and develop plans for future action.

The Caspian Energy Initiative was set up to promote transparency and good governance in the energy sector. It followed other IIED projects in the Caspian Region, including:

This project was also related to our work on Managing risks and opportunities in oil and gas industry contracting chains.

What IIED did

A series of multi-stakeholder dialogues in Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan took place from 2011-12 to promote transparency and good governance in the energy sector. A workshop in Turkmenistan was the first in that country to discuss the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) in a multi-stakeholder forum.

Further meetings focused on broader issues around transparency, good governance and sustainable development in the energy sector in Kazakhstan and Azerbaijan.

Dialogue 1: Introduction to EITI and principles of good governance in the oil and gas sector (28 September 2011, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan)

A voluntary global initiative to promote revenue transparency in the oil, gas and mining sectors, EITI requires countries to declare the revenues they receive from companies, and requires companies to declare what they pay.

Turkmenistan had not yet signed up to EITI. Participants discussed the initiative and broader issues of transparency and good governance in the oil and gas sector. The workshop was hosted by the British Embassy and the Turkmenistan Ministry of Oil and Gas. This was the first meeting of its kind to take place in Ashgabat.

Dialogue 2: Building a green economy in an oil- and gas-producing country (24–26 November 2011, Astana, Kazakhstan)

The green economy concept gaining currency globally was embedded in the government of Kazakhstan’s Green Bridge programme, which emphasised low-carbon development and ‘greening’ of industry and technologies.

In preparation for Rio+20, the government aimed to integrate this programme into the mainstream economy and develop energy projects that corresponded both to core business and green economy principles.

Dialogue 3: Moving beyond EITI in Azerbaijan (February 2012, Baku)

This was a one-day stakeholder workshop in Baku dedicated to best practice transparency, accountability and good governance in the development of the extractive sector in Azerbaijan and going beyond basic EITI. Azerbaijan was seeking to develop a process and activities ‘beyond EITI’, while local stakeholders sought to focus on revenue distribution.

Dialogue 4: Moving beyond EITI in Kazakhstan (April 2012, Aktau)

A one-day stakeholder workshop in Aktau was dedicated to best practice transparency, accountability and good governance in the development of extractive sector in Kazakhstan and going beyond basic EITI.

The laws on the Subsurface and Local Content, and tax and environmental regulations had contradictions that were unaddressed, and despite the impact of EITI in Kazakhstan, transparency in the energy sector still needed to be improved. Transparency needed to be applied via specific local policy provisions on social investment, environmental decision-making and community participation.

The International Energy Agency’s World Energy Outlook 2010 also identified the Caspian region as one of the most energy inefficient in the world. The energy intensity in GDP of the region as a whole in 2008 was more than 30% higher than that of Russia, more than double the global average, and over three times that of Europe.

As well as supporting energy security, the project also aimed to feed into UK climate change objectives by opening dialogue on energy efficiency and low carbon.