The Caspian Sea Resources: The Foundation for a Path Forward for the Economic, Political and Social Development of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan
AdvisorOstergard, Jr, Robert L.
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This case study explores the Caspian Sea energy politics, specifically the Trans-Caspian Gas Pipeline (TCGP) project and the Azeri-Turkmen conflict over the three offshore oil and gas fields. The conflict has been a deadlock of the project. It is almost unfeasible constructing the TCGP underneath of the sea without finding a viable solution to the Azeri-Turkmen conflict. Discovering the essence of the problem may help to understand what is going on over there. However, without exploring domestic and international barriers in front of the bilateral (on the disputed offshore fields) and multilateral (on the TCGP project) negotiations, none could find aviable solution to these entangled problems. Thus, areas of the domestic-international interaction of the problem are addressed through a comparative analysis of the two countries under theguidance of the `two-level games' theory. This study argues by making small compromises to each other Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan will see not only the long term economic benefits of the TCGP but also immediate political and social benefits. Consequently, this work suggests this is the right time to build the pipeline to develop oil and natural gas resources of the Caspian Sea for the economic, political and social development of Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan.