Energy Security and Regional Integration: the
case of ASEAN
Brian C. Ventura
Assistant Professor of Political Science
University of the Philippines Visayas, Philippines
APISA 5 Congress
Overseas Chinese University
Taichung, Taiwan
November 24-25 , 2011
• Transaction Approach
• Perspectives
• Using transaction approach for ASEAN
• ASEAN’s Energy Security Policy
• Internal drive
• external factors
Concluding observations
Defining transaction approach
• Karl Deutsch (1957) pioneered the use of transaction analysis to
measure the development of communities in the international system
• suggest that transactions in communities are very diverse in character
and are not confined to economic or political,
• quantity of transaction flow among members of the community
significantly differ from the flow to and from the perceived non-members.
Defining transaction approach
• Puchala (1971,129) defined transactions as the “contacts and dealing,
both governmental and non-governmental, between states.”
• transaction flow creates a sense of community
• basically, from the transaction approach a group can be defined as a
community it they interact with each other much more than with
perceived non-member
Perspectives in the transaction
Comprehensive transaction focus
•According to Bram’s (1966, 881) the international system “is not made up
of specific transactions between specific countries but the totality of it”
therefore understanding requires the calculation of all form of transactions
undertaken by all countries in the international community.
•Evaluating density of transactions should therefore include political,
economic and social exchanges across actors
Perspectives in the transaction
Context Specific transaction focus
•underlines the idea that transaction analysis can be many things for many
•Hughes (1971), for example, suggested that the way transaction itself is
conceptualized can produce varying transaction data result that will lend
itself to a wide range of analysis.
•Buzan’s concept of regional security complex, for example, suggests a
security specific fulcrum for classifying a group of actors as a community
Transactions approach for the ASEAN
• A way of assessing the health of a “caring and sharing” community
• Examine state driven attempt to improve transactions flow
• movement of goods, people and ideas
• What are its limits and potentials
Energy Security in Southeast Asia
• Energy is seen as part of security therefore the role of the state is very
• There is a diversity of energy security situations among ASEAN member
countries, from exporter (Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei) to highly import
dependent (Singapore, Philippines), and strategic transit (Malaysia,
• Energy resource is a major provider of revenues for some exporting countries,
for the state and factions in power,
• therefore, control of energy resources is also access to control of national
Proven gas reserve (BP Statistical Review 2010)
Proven oil reserve (BP Statistical Review 2010)
ASEAN and Energy Transaction Management
ASEAN Concord in Indonesia (1976)
•energy has been treated as an important basic commodity, giving it equal
position as food under the heading of economic cooperation.
•The focus has mainly been on management of supply
• For import dependent countries this means supply from exporters in
• For exporters this means accessible and stable export market
ASEAN and Energy Transaction Management
• Instruments outlined centers on sharing of risk by sharing oil stocks and
guaranteeing adequate supply.
• Importance was also placed on the sharing of information, research and
the development of alternative technology.
ASEAN and Energy Transaction
ASEAN Petroleum Security Agreement (Manila 1986)
• Spreading risk by supply sharing, as exemplified by the 1986 ASEAN
Petroleum Security Agreement signed in Manila, focus not only on the
problem of supply shortage but supply surplus as well.
• The fact that member countries have diverse level of energy needs
define this security strategy.
• During this time it was seen that exporting countries like Malaysia,
Brunei and Indonesia can supply importing countries like the Philippines,
Singapore and Thailand with emergency fuel in case of crises.
ASEAN and Energy Transaction
• . The ASEAN Plan of Action on Energy Cooperation of 2004-2009
outlined the policy direction of the region into two
1. the increase in interconnection of natural gas and electricity power
sector via the proposed ASEAN Power Grid and the Trans-ASEAN Gas
Pipeline projects and
2. promotion of energy efficiency and conservation; development of new
and renewable energy sources.
ASEAN and Energy Transaction
External Drivers
• Pipeline interconnection is intended to address both reaching markets in the
region and improving access for markets outside the region, such as China,
and Japan
• To reduce dependence of East Asian markets to the use of Malacca Straits.
• Investment from other Asian countries, like Japan and China will inevitably
bring the regions energy outside the region
• how integration is politically and administratively attempted even if
transaction flow may follow a dissimilar path
• As the economic development of the region continues supply depletion
will place member countries in a more equal energy security
predicament as importer
• in this case infrastructure integration will play a different role and the
current plan based on complementary resource will no longer be
• Energy transaction flow management is a vital part of ASEAN’s energy policy
• The current focus of ASEAN countries is management of material transaction
flows, (investment, supply, market access, infrastructure and technology)
• There is a need for improvement of non-material transaction flows such as
rules and standards.

Energy Security and Regional Integration: the case of ASEAN