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The International Energy Charter participates in Africa-Europe Sustainable Energy Investment

A new Africa-Europe Alliance for sustainable investment and jobs was announced by President Jean-Claude Juncker in his State of the Union Address in September 2018. Then, a high-level platform for sustainable energy investment (SEI Platform) was launched in November 2018 to provide recommendations on how to leverage public and private investments to help accelerate access to electricity and clean cooking for human development and sustainable growth. The next step has been the establishment of three stakeholder working groups to underpin the technical and analytical work of the SEI Platform. The International Energy Charter is invited to take part in Working Group 2 focusing on the improvement needed to enhance sustainable investment. Working Group 1 deals with business models for investment in sustainable energy, while Working Group 3 addresses business to business dialogue in support of investment.

The first meeting of the working groups took place on 29 April 2019 in Brussels. The opening remarks were made by the Directors General Dominique Ristori, DG Energy, and Stefano Manservisi, DG DEVCO. The SEI Platform Coordinator is Kandeh Yumkella, former UN Under-Secretary-General and Special Representative of the Secretary-General for SE4All. The African Union Commission was represented by Atef Marzouk, Acting Head of Energy Division. The second meeting will be held on 10 June 2019 in Conakry, Guinea.

By having signed the International Energy Charter, 20 African countries and regional organisations have expressed their political commitment to embrace international standards on cross-border trade, transit, and investment promotion and protection. They have the status of Observer to the Energy Charter Conference, the governing body created by the Energy Charter Treaty. The Treaty inspired the 2003 Energy Protocol of the Economic Commission of West African States, which offers a common basis to strengthen regional energy governance. The Treaty's ultimate goal is to enhance the rule of law globally and encourage a level playing field in today’s energy sector that has been impacted by the Paris agreement on climate change and UN Sustainable Development Goal No 7 on universal energy access.