Ambassador Kazuo Kodama is the Ambassador of Japan to the European Union and was the Vice-Chair of the Energy Charter Conference in 2017. Due to his experience and expertise, Ambassador Kodama played a vital role during the Chairmanship of Japan at the 27th Energy Charter Conference.
The Energy Charter Award was introduced in 2013 in order to recognise the outstanding role of individuals and entities in the development of the Energy Charter Process. The first recipient was the former Prime Minister of The Netherlands, Mr Ruud Lubbers, whom many consider as one of the founding fathers of the Energy Charter Process. That award was made at the Conference in Nicosia, Cyprus in 2013. In 2014, at the Conference in Astana Kazakhstan, the Award was issued to Mr. Gunther Oettinger – the European Commissioner for Energy since 2010 and formal head of the European Union delegation to the Energy Charter. In 2015, the recipient of the Award was Mr. Henk Kamp, the Minister of Economic Affairs of the Kingdom of the Netherlands for taking political ownership and putting together an ad-hoc Conference of the Energy Charter in The Hague in May 2015 to adopt and sign an updated political declaration – the International Energy Charter. In 2016, the Award was received by Klara Rakhmetova for proving exceptional efforts in promoting the Energy Charter Process.