Peter Zeihan: The World Should Watch Out for a Shift in US Foreign and Economic Policy
At the CFA Institute Middle East Investment Conference held in Dubai on 20–21 March, Peter Zeihan, an expert in international politics, economics, and energy, intrigued the audience of investment professionals with a range of succinct insights on geopolitical factors emerging on the global stage. In particular, Zeihan focused on the United States, which he believes could have a direct and substantial impact on investment strategies for the Middle East.
A central theme in Zeihan’s thesis was a perceived shift in U.S. foreign and economic policy based on the gradual realisation that through the United States’ energy supply chain in Canada, and its increasing production of shale oil, North America has the capacity to become energy self-sufficient by 2020.
Statistics shared with a somewhat surprised and increasingly enthralled audience included:
- 50% of all natural gas as produced in the United States is from shale oil
- Texas supplies 25% of Mexico’s natural gas and this will rise to 50% in the next five years
- New York has moved from zero natural gas usage a year ago to using nine billion cubic meters today — in the space of 12 months (a consumption greater than Belgium’s)