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Brussels, 29 June 2005

EU and India launch new co-operation on energy

The 1st meeting of the India - EU Energy Panel took place in Brussels today. The Panel was opened by François Lamoureux, Director General for Energy and Transport of the European Commission, and India Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran. The high level Indian delegation and the representatives of the European Commission had fruitful discussions on energy topics of common interest, including the use of clean coal technologies, renewable energies and energy efficiency. The two sides agreed on future co-operation in the areas of integrated energy markets, gas and oil and on energy forecasts in general.

The 1st India-EU Energy Panel is a further step in the intensification of the partnership between the European Union and India. The main objective of this first meeting was to identify the priority areas of common interest for the future work of the panel. Main areas covered in the discussions included the security of energy supply, environmental/climate change considerations, energy efficiency, nuclear energy and renewable energy, as well as energy market reforms.

The meeting confirmed the mutual interest in strengthening co-operation in this important sector. India and the EU face similar challenges in the energy sector, in particular as regards the security of energy supply for the next decades and sustainable energy development. The development of environmentally friendly technologies in the coal sector is therefore an important issue, which both sides decided to commonly tackle in the future. The EU side also declared its preparedness to share with the Indian partners its considerable experience in the area of the functioning of the internal gas and electricity markets, energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy sources.

It was agreed to have the next meeting of the Panel in India by the end of the year and to seek to develop joint actions on the above mentioned areas.

The Decision to set-up the Panel was taken at the 5th EU India Summit held in The Hague on 8 November 2004.

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