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By Monique Taylor (auth.)

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It is useful to identify the types of capacities that enhance the overall effectiveness of the state in formulating and implementing its policies. Wang and Hu (2001: 25) describe four interrelated capacities that determine the ability of the Chinese party-state to realise its policy goals: fiscal extractive capacity, steering capacity, legitimacy capacity and coercive capacity. Every state will possess these four capacities to varying degrees. In addition, adaptive or learning capacity is occasionally cited as another important element of state capacity.

However, the empirical record suggests that such distortions are often temporary and necessary to the A Party-State Centred Explanation of Policymaking in China’s Oil Sector 23 transition process by facilitating further reform and restructuring. When viewed from the ‘inside out’ and in terms of the particular set of policy challenges that China must address, it appears that the Chinese leadership has been quite successful in navigating very complex socioeconomic terrain, and to date has produced policies that have, more often than not, achieved their intended objectives.

This comprehensive definition captures the geological (availability), geopolitical (accessibility), economic (affordability), and environmental and social dimensions (acceptability) of energy security (Jewell 2011: 9). In terms of how these various dimensions of energy security are weighted, most definitions tend to emphasise the physical availability and economic cost of energy supplies (Jewell 2011: 9). Energy security is a contextdependent concept, and the specific nature of energy security problems and their proposed solutions will vary widely.

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