Strengthening ASEAN+3 Renewable Energy Strategies

Jane Romero, Mark Elder, Anindya Bhattacharya


ASEAN+3 countries have committed to promote renewable energy through regional cooperation (for example, the June 2004 Ministerial Statement "Forging Closer ASEAN+3 Energy Partnership” and the January 2007 Cebu Declaration on East Asian Energy Security), and many have also established national renewable energy promotion policies. Despite these good intentions, renewable energy utilization in the region remains very low, and the region’s enormous physical potential is largely unused. In many cases policies are weaker than they appear or suffer from inadequate funding or implementation. This is surprising since East Asian countries have very strong incentives to prioritize and invest in renewable energy, as well as vast untapped physical potential. Renewable energy would be enormously helpful in helping East Asian countries achieve urgent policy goals such as enhancing energy security, economic growth, poverty reduction, rural electrification, not to mention reducing GHG emissions. This study will examine why various national policies are less effective than expected, focusing on the ASEAN+3 countries, and why regional cooperation, which was already agreed on, has not been fully implemented. Based on this analysis, this study will make policy recommendations for how national and regional renewable energy policies in East Asia can be made more effective. This study argues increased globalization and regional integration pose several structural obstacles in additional to other well recognized economic, financial, legal, regulatory, and institutional barriers. This study recommends enhanced regional cooperation measures to address these structural obstacles, especially coordinated renewable energy targets and expanded cross-national grid interconnection, in conjunction with other complementary regional and national measures.


Regional cooperation, renewable energy policy

Full Text: