About the Journal

NBR Special Report #89, first published on 18 December 2020, https://www.nbr.org/publication/powering-southeast-asia-meeting-the-regions-electricity-needs/

Published by the National Bureau of Asian Research (NBR)


  • Han Phoumin, Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia, Jakarta, Indonesia
  • Mikkal E. Herberg, Senior Advisor, NBR; Senior Lecturer, University of California–San Diego
  • Nikos Tsafos, Senior Fellow with the Energy Security and Climate Change Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS)
  • Courtney Weatherby, Assistant Director of Energy and Environmental Affairs, NBR 


The 2020 report from the Energy Security Program focuses on a range of critical issues, including how the COVID-19 pandemic and other developments may shape the trajectory of Southeast Asia’s power mix, what must be done to encourage investment to bridge the infrastructure gap, and what are the prospects for building out a more sustainable power sector that relies on lower-carbon and renewable energy sources. Collectively, the four essays in this report paint a clear portrait of the needs and prospects for the development of Southeast Asia’s power sector.


  • Introduction by Mikkal E. Herberg and Ashley Johnson
  • The Outlook for Power Generation in Southeast Asia and the Geopolitics of the Indo-Pacific by Nikos Tsafos 
  • Renewable Energy in Southeast Asia by Courtney Weatherby
  • High-Quality Infrastructure and the Free and Open Indo-Pacific Vision by Mikkal E. Herberg
  • The Need for Quality Infrastructure to Meet Rising Energy Demand in the ASEAN Region by Han Phoumin

Powering Southeast Asia: Meeting the Region’s Electricity Needs

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