Vienna, 14 September 2010 Press release

Spindelegger: „No sustainable development without sustainable energy solutions“

More than 20 energy ministers in Vienna: First high-level meeting of the Africa-EU Energy Partnership

Vienna, 14 September 2010 – „A reliable energy supply drives social development and economic growth, and plays an essential role in fighting poverty. Therefore, as part of its engagement in the Africa-EU Partnership, Austria focuses in particular on the area of energy for sustainable development“, said Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger during the opening of the first high-level conference of the Africa-EU Energy Partnership in the Vienna Hofburg. He added that „With the first such ministerial meeting only a few days before the major UN summit on the Millennium Goals in New York, we are sending a clear signal. As a result, our partnership is taking a concrete shape“.

With more than 20 participating energy ministers from Africa and the Caribbean, the Energy Commissioner of the African Union Elham Ibrahim, EU Development Commissioner Andris Piebalgs and EU Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger and another 250 high-ranking participants, Austria has once again become the centre of international Dialogue: „Sustainable energy solutions constitute essential elements of a sustainable development and the centrepiece of „green economy“. Austrian companies in particular are often market leaders in green energy. This conference should also enable them to establish links to Africa’s promising energy market“, Spindelegger continued.

In the future, Austria will become actively involved in the EU-Africa strategy and will participate in the process of shaping it: „Today we will witness the launch of the Africa-EU Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme. We have a clear objective: Provide access to modern energy services to some 100 million people in Africa by 2010, enhance interconnectivity in energy supply across borders and improve energy efficiency. We have devised a detailed action plan to reach this goal, which will serve as a working basis in the future“, the Foreign Minister concluded.

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