Countries in the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf, commonly known as the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), established a regional power grid to support member countries’ high voltage networks in 2001 but, to date, the system has remained underutilized. The intended purpose of the grid was to provide backup electricity during emergencies caused by power system outages, especially during the summer, and to share spinning reserves, optimize capital investments in electricity and reduce fuel costs. The grid has been fully operational since 2011 and has satisfied its intended purpose. However, GCC member states have largely failed to take advantage of options associated with the grid to trade electricity. This paper uses the KAPSARC Toolkit for Behavioral Analysis platform, a model of collective decision-making processes developed at KAPSARC, to examine the political feasibility of expanding the utilization of the GCC grid to include trading electricity.
Research Fellow Paul was a research fellow in the Policy and Decision Sciences program. He is a former journalist and energy market… Paul was a research fellow in the Policy and Decision Sciences program. He is a former journalist and energy market analyst with over 25 years of experience in international energy markets. He opened the first Gulf Cooperation Council bureau for the oil price reporting agency S&P Global Platts in Dubai in 1989 and later launched the first regional office for Argus Media. Paul has attended numerous OPEC meetings and written extensively about the oil industry in publications such as Platts Oilgram News, Argus Global Markets, and the Petroleum Economist. He was also the senior advisor to the Secretary-General at the World Energy Council (WEC).