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Tuesday, 29 April 2014

EU-UNIDO confirm commitment for joint activities in sustainable energy and climate action

VIENNA, 29 April 2014 – The European Union (EU) and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) today confirmed their commitment to further develop cooperation and joint activities in the areas of sustainable energy and climate action.

The EU Delegation, led by Klaus Rudischhauser, Deputy Director General of the Directorate General for Development and Cooperation – EuropeAid, and a team of UNIDO experts, led by Taizo Nishikawa, Deputy Director General, discussed in Vienna today ways of reinforcing the capacities of developing countries in these fields within the framework of the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Sustainable Energy for All initiative.

Speaking about “the current trend towards industrial renaissance in countries of all developmental levels” Nishikawa stressed that “UNIDO’s focus on inclusive and sustainable industrial development is to be understood as a driver of development, increasing productivity and job creation, thereby contributing to social inclusion and equality on a larger scale”.

The meeting was a follow-up to the 2nd EU-UNIDO High Level Review Meeting held in Brussels on 17 October 2013 between LI Yong, Director General of UNIDO, and Andris Piebalgs, EU Commissioner for Development. The Review Meeting highlighted the significant potential for strategic cooperation between the two parties, warranting further discussion focusing specifically on areas of shared interest in the field of sustainable energy and opportunities for collaboration under the EU programming cycle.

UNIDO experts, including Pradeep Monga, Director of the Energy and Climate Change Branch, Rene Van Berkel, Unit Chief, Environmental Management Branch, and Guillermo Castella Lorenzo, Office-in-Charge, Montreal Protocol Branch, introduced the EU Delegation to the work of the Organization in the field of sustainable energy and environment.

The EU Delegation reiterated the European Union’s commitment to cooperation with UNIDO in areas such as sustainable energy, cleaner production, green industry, and the Montreal Protocol, and noted UNIDO’s significant expertise and comparative advantage in these fields. “The EU requires expert, technically capable partners, such as UNIDO, which is uniquely positioned in a number of areas to be a very important implementing partner for the EU,” said Klaus Rudischhauser.

Christophe Yvetot, the Head of UNIDO’s Brussels Office, noted that the Sustainable Energy for All initiative had created a transformative platform for private sector, government and civil society that the EU and UNIDO have strongly supported from the very beginning with great success. Further joint EU and UNIDO action was necessary for implementing the initiative on the ground, he said.

UNIDO activities in the energy field focus on the regional and global programmes, namely the Global Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centres, the Global Cleantech Innovation Programme, the Climate Technology Centre and Network (CTCN), the Partnership for Action of Green Economy (PAGE), and Energy Efficiency Improvement in the Fishery Sector.

These programmes seek to support and implement the objectives of the Sustainable Energy for All initiative through regional and global support of energy efficiency, renewable energy, and clean technology innovations for emissions reductions and job creation.

Future potential areas of cooperation with development financing institutions, the importance of strategic energy partnerships to affect sustainable energy solutions, and a regional approach to the promotion of sustainable energy markets and investments were named as common objectives of the EU and UNIDO.

The meeting in Vienna was viewed as an important step in strengthening the EU-UNIDO relationship on sustainable energy issues, one that could lead to the development of a concrete EU-UNIDO roadmap to promote sustainable energy and environment programmes within the context of inclusive and sustainable industrial development in the post-2015 agenda.