US announces Asia-Pacific energy partnership


U.S. President Obama, President of the Republic of Indonesia, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono and Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah of Brunei have proposed the partnership, in order to secure more affordable and clean energy in the Asian Pacific region.

"The Partnership will offer a framework for consolidating and expanding energy and environmental cooperation across existing regional forums to advance efforts to ensure affordable, secure, and cleaner energy supplies for the region," said the White House in a statement released.

Existing initiatives will include the ASEAN-United States Energy Cooperation Work Plan, the APEC Energy Working Group and the East Asia Summit Energy Ministers.

Identifying the potential for U.S. businesses, the country has said up to $6 billion will be made available for the partnership, which will among others, focus on renewable energy, and markets and interconnectivity. The funding will include:

  • Up to $5 billion from the U.S. Export-Import Bank in the form of credit financing over the next four years to increase access to American technology, services and equipment for the implementation of energy infrastructure projects; and
  • Up to $1 billion in financing from OPIC for sustainable power and energy infrastructure projects.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) has said it will support programs dealing with power generation, power distribution modernization and assistance with upgrading grid efficiencies to accommodate renewable power; and the U.S. State Department is expected to administer a $1 million energy capacity-building fund to support partnership activities via project preparation and technical assistance.

No more specific details were released.