Energy & Natural Resources

CLDP’s Energy and Natural Resources team provides legal technical support to governments grappling with the challenge of meeting national demand for reliable energy and mineral resources to ensure sustainable economic growth.  We advise ministries, regulators, and State-owned entities on issues across the energy spectrum, including: fiscal and regulatory frameworks for upstream oil and gas investment; developing national and cross-border gas and power markets; importing and establishing regulatory frameworks to support downstream markets for liquefied natural gas (LNG); power sector reforms including incorporating renewables, distributed generation and electric vehicles and allowing micro-grids to be constructed, operated and integrated into the central transmission grid; mining and minerals governance; and structuring financeable power projects in accordance with international best practices.  CLDP is a partner implementer with Power Africa and Asia EDGE (Enhancing Development and Growth through Energy).

Upstream Oil and Gas

Petroleum is a major component of most countries’ economies. Many governments rely on the royalties and dividends from state-owned companies to support their budgets, and, in turn, their national economic growth and social safety nets. Yet petroleum is also a challenge: new projects are among the largest and most capital-intensive in the world; oil and natural gas markets are volatile; and regulating petroleum sectors is extremely complex. Successfully leveraging private investment towards exploring for and producing new commercially viable resources – onshore or offshore, in shale and other unconventional formations, or through enhanced recovery – requires a reliable regulatory framework, competitive terms, significant institutional capacity, and a transparent process of licensing and managing blocks. CLDP assists governments on the policies, laws, regulations, and contracts that underpin petroleum sectors built on private investment.

Gas Markets and LNG

Gas is no longer the unwanted cousin of oil, only commercial if piped to nearby cities or markets just across the border.  A rapid rise in natural gas demand, the shift to competitive gas markets, and the transition to a global LNG market have governments seeking natural gas as a cost-competitive source of energy as well as a viable transitoin fuel in the quest to decarbonize the power, transportation fuel, and other sectors. CLDP advises governments on the policy changes that will enable a competitive gas market, and advises regulators and gas utiltiies on the regulations that will incentivize entrants to compete, including to sell regasified LNG into that market. CLDP advises on cross-border trading in natural gas, on options available for making "stranded" gas commercially feasible, and on inter-ministerial cooperation. CLDP leverages the lessons learned from the U.S.'s restrucutring of its natural gas market, and its oversight of new pipeline and port infrastructure for LNG.


In recent decades, the traditional model of power infrastructure built around large-scale generation projects and expanding central transmission grids has given way to a more diivse market with smaller scale generators and more decentralized grids. CLDP assists governments to successfully manage that transition to open market structures, working at both the policy and commercial level. In the policy space, CLDP helps governments reconcile their overlapping roles as power market regulators, project partners, and power customers. CLDP also works at the commercial level to prepare governmetns to negotiate with private power project developers and lenders to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.

CLDP organized the "Understanding" series on power sector development under the aegis of Power Africa and with support from USAID in partnership with stakeholders such as the African Legal Support Facility. Following a collaborative method the handbooks sought to incorporate the input of African governments, private sector experts, and multilateral institutions:

  • Understanding Power Purchase Agreements
  • Understanding Power Project Financing
  • Understanding Power Project Procurement

CLDP is expanding the "Understanding" library to include dedicated handbooks on transmission financing and energy storage. 

Mining and Minerals

The global economy depends on a reliable supply of metals and minerals.  Although many countries are endowed with significant deposits, governments are challenged to manage their development - how to incentivize investment and ensure environmental and social oversight.  Recently, the U.S.State Department, Bureau of Energy Resources, launched its Energy Resource Governance Initiative (ERGI) to promote resilient and secure energy resource mineral supply chains for the US and its partners.  Under the aegis of ERGI, CLDP provides assistance to governments to develop national and provincial investment frameworks for sustianable mining in key minerals.  CLDP advises on best principles in mineral extraction governance and best practices for regulators, and assists in the development of regulations that promote transparent, competitive, and sustainable mining.

Upcoming Programs

August 1, 2020 - April 30, 2021

Throughout the quarter, CLDP engaged with numerous experts to prepare and record eight separate sessions on trade topics, specifically designed for Afghanistan’s approximately 25 Commercial Attachés posted throughout the world. In May 2018, CLDP spent one week training the same group of Attachés in a comprehensive course designed for them prior to their departure. This updated training course is intended to provide more advanced training on relevant topics now that the Attachés have been serving in their posts for more than two years.  The topics for these presentations were identified based on consultations with the Attachés and relevant stakeholders in the last quarter. Topics include drafting international contracts, attracting foreign direct investment, negotiation strategies, and two sessions on working trade shows. The series of pre-recorded virtual presentations, including translated copies of the presentations, will be delivered on a rolling basis to the Attachés. In addition, future topics will be recorded and shared with the participants. These virtual recordings will be saved in an online repository, which will be available for any interested party to view, including the private sector. 

March 15, 2021 - May 24, 2021

CLDP in close collaboration with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) trained Bahrain Innovation and Technology Center (BITC) staff regarding filing patents in the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council).  This program was part of a CLDP/USPTO collaboration to conduct over 40 hours of intellectual property training for the BITC.  The program included training on how to obtain patents and copyrights in the US as well as other jurisdictions.  

CLDP in Action

February 24, 2021 - February 25, 2021

On February 24-25, CLDP conducted a workshop on FIDIC contracts for a delegation of Sri Lankan officials from the Attorney General’s office.