IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Has China’s Oil Investment in Belt and Road Initiative Countries Helped Its Oil Import?


  • Benye Shi

    (School of Economics, Jilin University of China, Changchun 130012, China)

  • Tian Cai

    (School of Economics, Jilin University of China, Changchun 130012, China)


Energy cooperation is an important part of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). As China’s investment in One Belt One Road countries has increased substantially, a natural question is whether the investment in the BRI countries can contribute to its oil import since it is the most critical part of the national energy security strategy. By employing a dataset that includes the oil import from BRI countries and the oil-related investment in these countries, along with other control variables, an econometric analysis is conducted to investigate the relationship between these two variables. The estimation results provide supporting evidence for the hypothesis that China’s oil investment in BRI countries has helped enhance its oil security. Specifically, investment in BRI countries increases the oil import volume from the host country and diversifies China’s sources of imports. Further analysis also reveals that the effects do not differ by investment mode, e.g., greenfield or mergers and acquisitions (M&A).

Suggested Citation

  • Benye Shi & Tian Cai, 2020. "Has China’s Oil Investment in Belt and Road Initiative Countries Helped Its Oil Import?," Energies, MDPI, vol. 13(12), pages 1-13, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jeners:v:13:y:2020:i:12:p:3176-:d:373547

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Sergey Mityakov & Heiwai Tang & Kevin K. Tsui, 2013. "International Politics and Import Diversification," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 56(4), pages 1091-1121.
    2. Angela Cheptea & Charlotte Emlinger & Karine Latouche, 2019. "Exporting firms and retail internationalization: Evidence from France," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 28(3), pages 561-582, June.
    3. Vivoda, Vlado, 2009. "Diversification of oil import sources and energy security: A key strategy or an elusive objective?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 37(11), pages 4615-4623, November.
    4. Eaton, Jonathan & Kortum, Samuel, 2001. "Trade in capital goods," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 45(7), pages 1195-1235.
    5. Thomas Chaney, 2008. "Distorted Gravity: The Intensive and Extensive Margins of International Trade," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(4), pages 1707-1721, September.
    6. Zhao, Yabo & Liu, Xiaofeng & Wang, Shaojian & Ge, Yuejing, 2019. "Energy relations between China and the countries along the Belt and Road: An analysis of the distribution of energy resources and interdependence relationships," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 107(C), pages 133-144.
    7. Cohen, Gail & Joutz, Frederick & Loungani, Prakash, 2011. "Measuring energy security: Trends in the diversification of oil and natural gas supplies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(9), pages 4860-4869, September.
    8. Kashcheeva, Mila & Tsui, Kevin K., 2015. "Political oil import diversification by financial and commercial traders," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 82(C), pages 289-297.
    9. repec:hal:spmain:info:hdl:2441/6apm7lruv088iagm4rv2c33jtg is not listed on IDEAS
    10. Sovacool, Benjamin K. & Mukherjee, Ishani, 2011. "Conceptualizing and measuring energy security: A synthesized approach," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 36(8), pages 5343-5355.
    11. Zhang, ZhongXiang, 2012. "The overseas acquisitions and equity oil shares of Chinese national oil companies: A threat to the West but a boost to China's energy security?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 698-701.
    12. Cheptea, Angela & Emlinger, Charlotte & Latouche, Karine, 2014. "Do exporting firms benefit from retail internationalization? Evidence from France," 2014 International Congress, August 26-29, 2014, Ljubljana, Slovenia 182706, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
    13. Leung, Guy C.K., 2011. "China's energy security: Perception and reality," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(3), pages 1330-1337, March.
    14. Yoshino, Naoyuki & Taghizadeh–Hesary, Farhad & Nakahigashi, Masaki, 2019. "Modelling the social funding and spill-over tax for addressing the green energy financing gap," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 34-41.
    15. Luo, Limin & Qi, Zhen & Hubbard, Paul, 2017. "Not looking for trouble: Understanding large-scale Chinese overseas investment by sector and ownership," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 142-164.
    16. Julie Jiang & Jonathan Sinton, 2011. "Overseas Investments by Chinese National Oil Companies: Assessing the Drivers and Impacts," IEA Energy Papers 2011/3, OECD Publishing.
    17. Thomas Chaney, 2008. "Distorted Gravity: The Intensive and Extensive Margins of International Trade," Post-Print hal-03579844, HAL.
    18. Zhang, Hai-Ying & Ji, Qiang & Fan, Ying, 2013. "An evaluation framework for oil import security based on the supply chain with a case study focused on China," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 87-95.
    19. Han, Lei & Han, Botang & Shi, Xunpeng & Su, Bin & Lv, Xin & Lei, Xiao, 2018. "Energy efficiency convergence across countries in the context of China’s Belt and Road initiative," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 213(C), pages 112-122.
    20. Ge, Fenglong & Fan, Ying, 2013. "Quantifying the risk to crude oil imports in China: An improved portfolio approach," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 72-80.
    21. Odgaard, Ole & Delman, Jørgen, 2014. "China׳s energy security and its challenges towards 2035," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 71(C), pages 107-117.
    22. Du, Julan & Zhang, Yifei, 2018. "Does One Belt One Road initiative promote Chinese overseas direct investment?," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 189-205.
    23. Gasser, Patrick, 2020. "A review on energy security indices to compare country performances," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 139(C).
    24. Zhang, ZhongXiang, 2011. "China's energy security, the Malacca dilemma and responses," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(12), pages 7612-7615.
    25. Farhad Taghizadeh-Hesary & Naoyuki Yoshino, 2020. "Sustainable Solutions for Green Financing and Investment in Renewable Energy Projects," Energies, MDPI, vol. 13(4), pages 1-18, February.
    26. Sun, Yu & Chen, Lizhen & Sun, Huaping & Taghizadeh-Hesary, Farhad, 2020. "Low-carbon financial risk factor correlation in the belt and road PPP project," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 35(C).
    27. Carl Gaigné & Karine Latouche & Stéphane Turolla, 2018. "Vertical Ownership and Export Performance: Firm-Level Evidence from the Food Industry," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 100(1), pages 46-72.
    28. Le, Thai-Ha & Chang, Youngho & Taghizadeh-Hesary, Farhad & Yoshino, Naoyuki, 2019. "Energy insecurity in Asia: A multi-dimensional analysis," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 83(C), pages 84-95.
    29. Tan, Xiaomei, 2013. "China's overseas investment in the energy/resources sector: Its scale, drivers, challenges and implications," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 36(C), pages 750-758.
    30. Taghizadeh-Hesary, Farhad & Yoshino, Naoyuki, 2019. "The way to induce private participation in green finance and investment," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 31(C), pages 98-103.
    31. Philipp Harms & Pierre†Guillaume Méon, 2018. "Good and useless FDI: The growth effects of greenfield investment and mergers and acquisitions," Review of International Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 26(1), pages 37-59, February.
    32. Peter J Buckley & L Jeremy Clegg & Adam R Cross & Xin Liu & Hinrich Voss & Ping Zheng, 2007. "The determinants of Chinese outward foreign direct investment," Journal of International Business Studies, Palgrave Macmillan;Academy of International Business, vol. 38(4), pages 499-518, July.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)


    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.

    Cited by:

    1. Sidong Zhao & Yiran Yan & Jing Han, 2021. "Industrial Land Change in Chinese Silk Road Cities and Its Influence on Environments," Land, MDPI, vol. 10(8), pages 1-30, July.
    2. Ur Rehman, Obaid & Ali, Yousaf, 2021. "Optimality study of China’s crude oil imports through China Pakistan economic corridor using fuzzy TOPSIS and Cost-Benefit analysis," Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review, Elsevier, vol. 148(C).
    3. Zijie Yang & Dong Huang & Yuqing Zhao & Wenqian Wang, 2022. "A Bibliometric Review of Energy Related International Investment Based on an Evolutionary Perspective," Energies, MDPI, vol. 15(9), pages 1-21, May.

    Most related items

    These are the items that most often cite the same works as this one and are cited by the same works as this one.
    1. Zhao, Yong & Shi, Xunpeng & Song, Feng, 2020. "Has Chinese outward foreign direct investment in energy enhanced China's energy security?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 146(C).
    2. Shao, Yanmin & Qiao, Han & Wang, Shouyang, 2017. "What determines China's crude oil importing trade patterns? Empirical evidences from 55 countries between 1992 and 2015," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 109(C), pages 854-862.
    3. Ang, B.W. & Choong, W.L. & Ng, T.S., 2015. "Energy security: Definitions, dimensions and indexes," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 1077-1093.
    4. Geng, Jiang-Bo & Ji, Qiang, 2014. "Multi-perspective analysis of China's energy supply security," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 64(C), pages 541-550.
    5. Yang, Yuying & Li, Jianping & Sun, Xiaolei & Chen, Jianming, 2014. "Measuring external oil supply risk: A modified diversification index with country risk and potential oil exports," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 930-938.
    6. Yu, Zhen & Xiao, Yao & Li, Jinpo, 2021. "How does geopolitical uncertainty affect Chinese overseas investment in the energy sector? Evidence from the South China Sea Dispute," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(C).
    7. Huang, Beijia & Zhang, Long & Ma, Linmao & Bai, Wuliyasu & Ren, Jingzheng, 2021. "Multi-criteria decision analysis of China’s energy security from 2008 to 2017 based on Fuzzy BWM-DEA-AR model and Malmquist Productivity Index," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 228(C).
    8. Taghizadeh-Hesary, Farhad & Yoshino, Naoyuki & Inagaki, Yugo & Morgan, Peter J., 2021. "Analyzing the factors influencing the demand and supply of solar modules in Japan – Does financing matter," International Review of Economics & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 1-12.
    9. Zhang, Hai-Ying & Ji, Qiang & Fan, Ying, 2013. "An evaluation framework for oil import security based on the supply chain with a case study focused on China," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 87-95.
    10. Liu, Litao & Cao, Zhi & Liu, Xiaojie & Shi, Lei & Cheng, Shengkui & Liu, Gang, 2020. "Oil security revisited: An assessment based on complex network analysis," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 194(C).
    11. Ehsan Rasoulinezhad & Farhad Taghizadeh-Hesary & Farzad Taghizadeh-Hesary, 2020. "How Is Mortality Affected by Fossil Fuel Consumption, CO 2 Emissions and Economic Factors in CIS Region?," Energies, MDPI, vol. 13(9), pages 1-13, May.
    12. Yoshino, Naoyuki & Taghizadeh-Hesary, Farhad & Otsuka, Miyu, 2021. "Covid-19 and Optimal Portfolio Selection for Investment in Sustainable Development Goals," Finance Research Letters, Elsevier, vol. 38(C).
    13. Herie Park & Sungwoo Bae, 2021. "Quantitative Assessment of Energy Supply Security: Korea Case Study," Sustainability, MDPI, vol. 13(4), pages 1-15, February.
    14. Leung, Guy C.K. & Cherp, Aleh & Jewell, Jessica & Wei, Yi-Ming, 2014. "Securitization of energy supply chains in China," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 123(C), pages 316-326.
    15. Ren, Jingzheng & Sovacool, Benjamin K., 2014. "Quantifying, measuring, and strategizing energy security: Determining the most meaningful dimensions and metrics," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 838-849.
    16. Zhao, Chunfu & Chen, Bin, 2014. "China’s oil security from the supply chain perspective: A review," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 136(C), pages 269-279.
    17. Mohsin, M. & Zhou, P. & Iqbal, N. & Shah, S.A.A., 2018. "Assessing oil supply security of South Asia," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 155(C), pages 438-447.
    18. Xiaolei Sun & Jun Hao & Jianping Li, 2022. "Multi-objective optimization of crude oil-supply portfolio based on interval prediction data," Annals of Operations Research, Springer, vol. 309(2), pages 611-639, February.
    19. He, Shuying & Guo, Kun, 2021. "What factors contribute to the mutual dependence degree of China in its crude oil trading relationship with oil-exporting countries?," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 228(C).
    20. Narula, Kapil & Reddy, B. Sudhakara, 2016. "A SES (sustainable energy security) index for developing countries," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 94(C), pages 326-343.


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:gam:jeners:v:13:y:2020:i:12:p:3176-:d:373547. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: . General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If CitEc recognized a bibliographic reference but did not link an item in RePEc to it, you can help with this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: MDPI Indexing Manager (email available below). General contact details of provider: .

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.