Geopolitics and the role of energy security in the global level and its impacts and challenges withen middle east and gulf cooperation council

There has been a change in the world order since the break-up of the Soviet bloc: America now is the only superpower in the world and this gives the West the ability to dominate by a combination of military and economic strength (Nye, 2011). One result of this is that the term “global security” is increasingly defined by America and its allies, at least until China reaches its full economic potential (Calabrese, 1998). There is a danger that GCC countries, who hold the key to future energy supplies will be caught up in any eventual rivalry between these two great powers. Military strength cannot solve problems on its own – other forms of power such as soft power or smart power draw in political and economic negociations as well (Smith, 2006).
American foreign policy directed towards aligning countries like Saudi Arabia with American objectives, in order to secure stable supply of oil and gas (Brown and Hawthorne, 2010). The very term “energy security” is defined as “the provision of reasonably priced, reliable and environmentally friendly energy” (Müller-Kraenner, 2008) but this is from the perspective of western states who generally lack substantial energy deposits, and have renewable technology which does not meet all their needs.
Economic objectives in GCC countries are increasingly towards diversification from oil, gas and other natural resources, in order to avoid the so-called “resource curse” of over-dependence on a few products. There are major implications for all GCC countries because membership of the WTO involves signing up to GATT agreements which “involves dramatic and profound changes in the way trade was conducted in these countries” (Michalopoulos, 1998). These changes include measures like the removal of export subsidies and the introduction of Western-style laws, institutions and methods of governance. Most

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