CEEW organised a session on clean energy and trade in collaboration with Geneva-based think-tank, the International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development (ICTSD) on the occasion of the fourth Clean Energy Ministerial being held in New Delhi this year.
Massive and rapid scale-up of renewable energy and energy efficiency is crucial in order to mitigate climate change, enhance energy security and provide access to energy, in particular for those living off-grid. Currently, a range of obstacles to the innovation, production, scale-up and deployment of clean energy, including to the movement of relevant technologies, goods and services across national borders exist. Such obstacles go beyond pure trade border measures and include trade, industrial and energy policies such as standards, subsidies, local content requirements, government procurement practices and investment rules. International cooperation in the field of energy are needed, such as the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) that convenes the primary actors responsible and committed to a shift towards greater participation of clean energy in their countries’ energy mixes.
By addressing some of the most salient issues in the context of trade in renewable energy, such as subsidies, local content requirements and standards, the session aimed at advancing international cooperation on these complex matters, through sharing state-of-the-art information on how domestic policies relate to the world market of renewable energy goods and services, and on how improved cooperation between countries could effectively remove stumbling blocks to the scale-up of the relevant technologies. Moreover, the session which was attended by representatives from atleast twelve CEM-member countries and top-level executives from many Indian and international companies operating in the clean energy sector, was aimed specifically at engaging stakeholders in the quest for a conducive cooperation, rules-based or through public private partnerships on trade related to clean energy.
Welcome remarks were given by Mr Suresh Prabhu, Chairman of the Council on Environment, Energy and Water and former Union Minister of the Government of India. followed by a key note speech by Mr Kandeh Yumkella, Director General, UNIDO and Co-chair, UN Sustainable Energy for All. Initial remakrs were given by Tarum Kapoor, Joint Secretary, Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Government of India.
The session then took the form of an interactive policy dialogue, which included the views and perspectives of the full group of participants. Stakeholders who made interventions to the dialogue counted Mr Hans Jørgen Koch, Deputy Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Climate, Energy and Building, Danish Energy Agency; Mr Vineet Mittal, Co-founder and Managing Director, Welspun; Mr Todd Foley, Senior Vice President, American Council on Renewable Energy, Mr Peter Brun, Managing Director of the SETI Alliance and Pierre Tardieu, Regulatory Affairs Advisor, The European Wind Energy Association. The session was moderated by Dr Arunabha Ghosh from CEEW and Mr Ricardo-Melendez-Ortiz from ICTSD.