EU and EBRD boost energy cooperation

L to R: Suma Chakrabarti; Miguel Arias Cañete (Photo: European Commission)

The European Union (EU) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) have agreed to enhance energy cooperation on a number of areas, including renewable energy.

Under a new memorandum of understanding (MoU), signed today, December 8, by EU Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete and EBRD President Suma Chakrabarti, the parties agreed to broaden the cooperation on scaling-up energy efficiency financing, increasing investment in renewable energy, developing smart grids, and enhancing resilience to climate change.

Miguel Arias Cañete said: “The new MoU comes at the best possible moment: enhancing the bilateral cooperation between the EBRD and the Commission will help us make the most of each other’s expertise and support our actions to promote investment in key areas like energy efficiency, renewables and infrastructure.”

The MoU is expected to enhance Europe’s energy security by further promoting the interconnectivity of its energy systems, and by promoting nuclear safety and decommissioning.

The cooperation between EU and EBRD, which was until now focused mainly on energy security, energy efficiency and nuclear decommissioning, is also extended to related areas like regulatory and financing criteria issues with the signing of the MoU.

Suma Chakrabarti added: “I am delighted to sign this MOU, which will establish even closer relations between the EBRD and the EU on a range of energy issues. The EBRD and the EU already collaborate closely, but this MoU will help us to take our co-operation further, including scaling-up energy efficiency financing, increased investment in renewable energy and the development of smart grids.”

The new MoU replaces a previous document signed in 2007, and will be implemented through an enhanced coordination of policies and activities and through the optimization of financing synergies, the European Commission (EC) informed.

The EU is one of the largest donors to EBRD green projects, EC said, contributing more than €290 million in support of the Bank’s green ventures since 2006.

Since then, the EBRD’s green investments have reached a value of €20 billion in over 1,000 projects, helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by an estimated 80 million tonnes each year, according to EC.

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