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Global Go To Think Tank Index (GGTTI) 2020 launched                    111,75 Think Tanks across the world ranked in different categories.                SDPI is ranked 90th among “Top Think Tanks Worldwide (non-US)”.           SDPI stands 11th among Top Think Tanks in South & South East Asia & the Pacific (excluding India).            SDPI notches 33rd position in “Best New Idea or Paradigm Developed by A Think Tank” category.                SDPI remains 42nd in “Best Quality Assurance and Integrity Policies and Procedure” category.              SDPI stands 49th in “Think Tank to Watch in 2020”.            SDPI gets 52nd position among “Best Independent Think Tanks”.                           SDPI becomes 63rd in “Best Advocacy Campaign” category.                   SDPI secures 60th position in “Best Institutional Collaboration Involving Two or More Think Tanks” category.                       SDPI obtains 64th position in “Best Use of Media (Print & Electronic)” category.               SDPI gains 66th position in “Top Environment Policy Tink Tanks” category.                SDPI achieves 76th position in “Think Tanks With Best External Relations/Public Engagement Program” category.                    SDPI notches 99th position in “Top Social Policy Think Tanks”.            SDPI wins 140th position among “Top Domestic Economic Policy Think Tanks”.               SDPI is placed among special non-ranked category of Think Tanks – “Best Policy and Institutional Response to COVID-19”.                                            Owing to COVID-19 outbreak, SDPI staff is working from home from 9am to 5pm five days a week. All our staff members are available on phone, email and/or any other digital/electronic modes of communication during our usual official hours. You can also find all our work related to COVID-19 in orange entries in our publications section below.    The Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) is pleased to announce its Twenty-third Sustainable Development Conference (SDC) from 14 – 17 December 2020 in Islamabad, Pakistan. The overarching theme of this year’s Conference is Sustainable Development in the Times of COVID-19. Read more…       FOOD SECIRITY DASHBOARD: On 4th Nov, SDPI has shared the first prototype of Food Security Dashboard with Dr Moeed Yousaf, the Special Assistant to Prime Minister on  National Security and Economic Outreach in the presence of stakeholders, including Ministry of National Food Security and Research. Provincial and district authorities attended the event in person or through zoom. The dashboard will help the government monitor and regulate the supply chain of essential food commodities.

Business Recorder

Published Date: Dec 9, 2015

On Energy Security

Energy security is critical to economic growth, human development and achievement of post-2015 development agenda. In South Asian countries that include Pakistan, the demand for energy is increasing rapidly, thanks to fast developmental growth in the region and if one follows World Bank forecast the area will beat East Asia in economic development by 2016. But, the growth has created higher demand for energy and energy demand has also become an important factor for the overall sustainability in South Asia. The energy security was also one of the central topics at the SDPIs eighteenth sustainable development conference currently being held in Islamabad. 
The momentum of growth which South Asia is enjoying is in a dire need of an adequate supply of energy on the sustainable basis. The region is facing extremely low per capita energy availability and consumption. As of 2010, according to World Bank close to 26 percent of the regional population did not have access to electricity, even though a quarter of worlds population lives in the area and the region has the largest chunk of the global un-electrified population. On the other hand, close to 62 percent population in the area according to a study by SDPI has no access to non-solid cooking fuels. The situation will only get worse as the demand for energy will grow to keep pace with the growing population and economy. 
The major issues that face the South Asias energy security in general and Pakistan in particular, are higher cost and difficulties of providing conventional power infrastructure to reach a large number of populations living in rural areas. Heavy dependence on traditional energy for domestic usage and an undesirable, yet growing dependence on imported fossil fuels. But, given the resource constraints, domestic energy security is almost infeasible for Pakistan and the region without import dependency and exposing to geopolitical risks. That is why the situation calls for regional energy cooperation in the region which can also be the major step in energy security in the area. 
There is enough evidence that South Asia can achieve regional energy security through developing a regional electricity grid and market. Energy resource surplus countries such as Nepal, and Bhutan, could benefit from export-led growth, which would simultaneously meet demands in energy deficient countries like Pakistan and Bangladesh. At the moment, the regional energy trade between South Asian countries constitutes is less than 5 percent of total trade within the region.
According to a recent report by World Bank, there are complementarities in electricity demand and resource endowments among countries in this region due to the diversity of primary energy resources and differences in seasonal patterns of supply and demand. If thats not enough regional cooperation is expected to bring in economies of scale in investment, consolidate financial situation, enhance competition and efficiency, and enable cost-effective penetration of advanced energy technologies. 
Nevertheless, there are some positive signs. Pakistan, along with other SAARC member countries, signed a regional cooperation agreement on electricity trade during the summit at Kathmandu. Under this agreement, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh would be able to import electricity from hydropower-rich Nepal and Bhutan. 
However, with that set going by experience, merely signing an agreement will not sufficient. There are some shortcomings like poor installation of generation capacity, insufficient operational efficiency, and the weak financial performance of utilities, hesitant private sector participation and limited power sector reforms. Furthermore, the biggest issues related to any regional trade is policy, institutional and political barriers. Lack of confidence and trust in the countries, in particular between India and Pakistan trade-restrictive policies and challenges in establishing effective regional agencies are other obstacles to regional energy cooperation. 
Having said that the need for regional cooperation on regional energy security is necessary and that is why it is high time for the South Asian region to have a dedicated regional agency whose job should be to create an institutional memory that does not erode with political changes and to steer the dialogues and initiatives.