Nearly 600 million people in Africa lack access to modern energy services. Africa and Europe have joined forces to meet that challenge in a partnership of equals. The Africa-EU Energy Partnership now convenes its first Ministerial Meeting to shape the way forward, agree on joint political targets for implementation until 2020 and launch a Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme. Energy Ministers from South Africa, Uganda, Ethiopia, Mauritius, Cabo Verde and Togo have already confirmed their attendance to this First High Level Meeting of the Africa-EU Energy Partnership (AEEP) on the 14 - 15 September 2010 in Vienna Hofburg, Austria.
Africa-EU Energy Partnership
Energy is at the heart of development and a prerequisite for reaching the Millennium Development Goal of halving the number of the world’s hungry and poor until 2015.
Meeting our energy needs will be the main challenge of the 21st century. The world is at a cross-road concerning the future of energy. Where will the energy come from to power economic development and to provide a livelihood and a life in dignity for millions? How vulnerable are our societies and economies when energy prices rise or energy supplies are interrupted? Can we curtail and in future avoid wars over energy? Can we change our energy use to avoid further degradation of our planet and counteract climate change? A reliable and sustainable energy supply is a major challenge both for Africa and Europe.
Time has come for consciously entering a new path and confidently preparing our future walk side by side. In Lisbon in December 2007, all African and European Heads of State and their governments agreed to launch the Africa- EU Energy Partnership (AEEP), as one of the eight strategic partnerships comprising the Africa-EU Joint Strategy.
Under this partnership of equals, the two continents share their knowhow and resources, tune their complementary interests and closely link their policies to meet the energy challenge hand in hand.
First High Level Meeting of the AEEP
The First High Level Meeting on 14/15 September 2010 will be the first of its kind, bringing together leading politicians and decision-makers from Africa and Europe. At the event, a road map as well as concrete targets for the AEEP’s future work will be endorsed.
Within the framework of the partnership, the first High Level Meeting of the AEEP will
- promote and strengthen the Africa-EU Energy Partnership in Africa and Europe
- agree on concrete targets for AEEP's future work until 2020
- launch the Africa-EU Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme that will open new linkages in the energyeconomic sector for industrial trade and business cooperation between Africa and Europe
- reaffirm the commitment to enhancing energy security and energy access on both continents
- reinforce cooperation on energy interconnections within Africa and between Africa and the EU
- endorse a road map for the implementation of AEEP's future actions
- send a clear message on energy cooperation between the two continents to the upcoming Africa-EU Summit in November 2010.
The Africa-EU Energy Partnership is supported on the European side by the co-chairs Austria and Germany, represented by the Austrian Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. On the African side, the African Union Commission and Mauritius, represented by the Ministry of Energy and Public Utilities, co-chair the partnership.
The First High Level Meeting will bring together
- Policy makers from the African and the European Union Commissions
- National ministers responsible for energy and Africa-EU relations
- Representatives of the Regional Economic Communities (RECs) and Power Pools (PPs) as well as delegates of other specialised institutions and international organisations.
- Representatives from the business and research as well as from the civil society sector
See news article : High Level Meeting on Energy, 14-15 September