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Energy Security as a Factor of Foreign Policy

Open Panel

Abstract

The paper analyses how energy security works as a specific factor of foreign policy. At first the paper strives to define energy security and gives a brief overlook of the present attempts how to measure it. This is to sum up commonly used indicators that enter the calculations and are therefore considered essential and will consequently be taken into consideration in the third part. Since the oil is the most important resource of energy to secure for the most of the world countries, largely because of its irretrievability in certain areas of use such as transportation, the paper concentrates on oil and mentions other resources rather marginally. Secondly it classifies state actors according to two dimensions those being the size of the economy and whether the state is a net importer (consumer) or net exporter (producer) thus obtaining a matrix of four possible types of actors. The paper then concentrates on import dependent countries of both types of small and big economic power and tries to find theoretical reasons why their approach to securing energy resources on the international field might be different. In the third part these theoretical findings are applied to the analysis of foreign policies of two chosen states: the USA and the Czech Republic, in order to verify their validity. The goal of this paper is to contribute to the debate on the indistinct definition of energy security in connection with analysis on its practical application in international relations.