Scramble for Caspian Energy: Can Big Power Competition Sidestep China and India?

  • P. L. Dash
Part of the The Sciences Po Series in International Relations and Political Economy book series


The post-Soviet developments in and around the Caspian Sea have been so incredibly swift that observers and analysts find it difficult to keep abreast of all nuances of changes year after year. When the entire Caspian theater shifted possession from two owners to five owners of the sea, the arithmetic of everything surrounding the Caspian suddenly changed. Some of these developments such as ownership dispute over the Caspian, the legal status of the sea, possession and access to seafaring and exploitation of resources, building of the Navy for each independent state, and other similar issues are quite baffling simply because nearly two decades of negotiations have yielded few tangible results to resolve mutual bickering. Besides these burning issues the Caspian Sea found itself in the vertex of an unprecedented geopolitical competition surrounding its hydrocarbon reserves. These competitions have become so intense over the years that after the successful construction of the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan (BTC) oil pipeline and the parallel Baku-Tbilisi-Erzurum (BTE) gas pipeline, a new gas connectivity called Nabucco between five countries—Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, and Austria—has taken shape. Its doors are open for others to join. This has considerably sharpened the ongoing regional geopolitical competition on a scale never seen before.


Energy Security Caspian Basin Central Asian Region Pipeline Project Hydrocarbon Reserve 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 2.
    A. Samozhnev, S. Zykov, M. Tchkanikov, Kyda Jobyet “Nabocco”, Rossiskaya Gazeta, July 14, 2009, p. 5.Google Scholar
  2. 3.
    Mikhail Rostovskii, “Iskushenie Neftyiu: Kak Rossiia poteriaet Azerbaijan”, Rossiia i Musul’manskii Mir, no. 11 (2005), pp. 95–97.Google Scholar
  3. 4.
    B. Shaffer, “From Pipedream to Pipeline: A Caspian Success Story”, Current History, October, 2005, p. 343.Google Scholar
  4. 5.
    M. Malek, “Politika Bezopastnosti na iuzhnom Kavkaze: Ocnovnoi Krug Problem”, Tsentral’naia Aziia i Kavkaz, vol. 30, no. 6, 2003, p. 16.Google Scholar
  5. 7.
    Padma L. Dash, Caspian Pipeline Politics, Energy Reserves and Regional Implications (New Delhi: An Observer Research Foundation Publication, Pentagon Press, 2008), p. 42.Google Scholar
  6. 8.
    K. Celik, K. Cemaletin, “Azerbaijani Petroleum: Past and Present”, Eurasian Studies, no. 16 (1999), p. 120.Google Scholar
  7. 9.
    M. Liu, “Life Begins at Sixty”, The Times of India, September 28, 2009, p. 16.Google Scholar
  8. 11.
    I. Shariff, B. Mak Arvin, “China in Global Economy: A Threat to the United States?” World Affairs, Vol. 11, no. 4 (2007), pp. 99–100.Google Scholar
  9. 13.
    M.K. Bhadrakumar, “Engaging China as a Friendly Neighbour”, The Hindu, April 10, 2008.Google Scholar
  10. 14.
    L. Muzaparova, “Sino-Kazakh Energy Cooperation: Assessment of Potential and Direction of Development”, in Kazakhstan and China: Strategic Partnership for Development, International Conference Proceedings, March 2, 2006, pp. 21–22.Google Scholar
  11. 15.
    A. Zulkharneev, “Iran’s Energy Interests in the Caspian: The Window of Lost Opportunities”, Security Index, vol. 15, no. 3–4 (88–89), 2009, p. 61.Google Scholar
  12. 16.
    S. Blank, “Afghanistan’s Energy Future and Its Potential Implications”, <> (accessed March 1, 2010).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Marlène Laruelle, Jean-François Huchet, Sébastien Peyrouse, and Bayram Balci 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • P. L. Dash

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations