REPORT: Protection and Modernization of Critical Infrastructure – Key to Prosperity and Security
Electricity grids, telecom/information technology systems, and transportation networks are just some of the infrastructure systems critical for a country’s security and safety. The public and businesses need and expect these systems to be in place and to be consistently reliable. The public is also quick to blame governments for any breakdowns. Yet, these systems face repeated threats from earthquakes, natural wear, and malicious actors, including hostile governments.
Major new projects are underway in Central Asia and the Caucasus, totaling billions of dollars annually, building and updating energy, transportation, IT, and other infrastructure across the region. Moreover, as the new Silk Road, BRI, Lapis Lazuli Corridor, and other links develop connecting the West with China and Central and Southern Asia, the United States and western Europe have a strategic interest in the integrity of these systems.
The Caspian Policy Center’s new study on modernizing and protecting critical infrastructure in the Caucasus and Central Asia looks at the threats facing electricity grids, oil and natural gas production and pipeline facilities, the growing surface transportation systems, and Internet and information technology networks. The study’s recommendations focus on the vital need to develop on-going trusted relations and cooperation among businesses, governments, and research institutes to identify threats and solutions, the need for increased regional cooperation, and the need to make critical infrastructure protection an element of the region’s governments with the United States and other western partners.