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Chinese and American oil companies and their environmental practices in Chad: A quiet confluence of streams or silence before the battle?

Van Vliet G., Magrin G., Yang W., Maoundonodji G., Dittgen R., Lin Y., Wang F., Liang G., Doudjidingao A., Tavares M.A.. 2011. Cambridge : ESRC, 32 p..

Does the Chinese National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) intend to, and is it in a position to, engage in a race to the bottom regarding environmental standards and norms in Chad's oil sector? Based on recent empirical research, we will focus on the entangled relationships which are emerging following the arrival of CNPC in the Chadian oil sector (initially dominated by Exxon, a US oil major). Chinese environmental regulations in the oil sector and their increasing enforcement have resulted in a comprehensive and composite environmental management system, influenced by Chinese, international and local practices. When entering the Chadian oil sector in 2007, the CNPC thus appears to be well prepared to face comparison with the 'Exxon-Doba' project, a World Bank supported project (1998-2007). Large parts of the expected oil production in the CNPC fields will have to be exported. Among the several transport options available, the most viable appears to be using the pipeline built and administered by the Exxon consortium. The merger of the two oil streams appears as plausible but will put a burden on CNPC´s capacity to engage in meaningful dialogues with stakeholders and thus compete in the setting of new environmental best practices.

Mots-clés : politique de l'environnement; entreprise étrangère; pétrole; industrie des corps gras; réglementation; gestion de l'environnement; tchad; amériques; chine

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