The Warsaw Voice » Business » Monthly - June 29, 2015
Central Europe Energy Partners
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Energy Summit in Warsaw
   
CEEP members call for an Energy Union based on a digital economy.

Technological innovation and the digitization of industry are indispensable driving forces behind a successful Energy Union in Europe. Key to this objective is the infrastructure of a North-South Corridor between the Baltic, Adriatic and Black Seas. But this requires the establishment of a platform that would bring together all relevant players and develop proper financial and regulatory solutions. These are the main findings of the ‘29+1’ Annual Energy Summit held by Central Europe Energy Partners (CEEP) in Warsaw June 15-16.

CEEP members, who include Central Europe’s leading energy and energy-intensive companies, entered into a comprehensive exchange of findings and views with Günther Oettinger, the European commissioner for Digital Economy and Society. They underlined that, even though energy is the backbone of the European economy, the integration of the EU11 with the EU15 in the field of energy is slow in coming.

Pawe³ Olechnowicz, Chairman of the Board of Directors at Central Europe Energy Partners, said, “Together with Commissioner Oettinger, we agreed that our future economic development depends on the implementation of an affordable energy and digital infrastructure. To firmly and cost-efficiently interlink the whole European Union, we need a North-South Corridor, which includes energy pipelines, power lines, highways, railways, and telecommunication grids. The Corridor is also essential to the region’s successful participation in the global economy, while also improving the capacity of our countries in terms of IT logistics and enabling them to deal effectively with cyber-threats.”

The Warsaw Memorandum, which was handed to Commissioner Oettinger at the end of the summit, reflected the general position of participants. They welcomed the establishment of the Connecting Europe Facilities (CEF) and the European Fund for Strategic Investments (EFSI). They also underlined that insufficient technological innovation and infrastructural connectivity posed a special burden on Central European countries.

Oettinger said, “The financial impulse from European funds can lead to multiple investments that will secure the implementation of the necessary technological innovation and digital transformation of the energy industry. Innovative technologies and gains in efficiency can help reduce costs and increase the competitiveness of European energy and energy-intensive businesses. For this purpose, the development of energy infrastructure, and the expansion of digital communication networks is essential.”

CEEP was founded to represent the interests of energy and energy-intensive companies from Central Europe in order to strengthen the region’s energy security within the framework of a common EU energy and energy security policy. It is the first major body to represent the region at the EU level. It argues that EU member states can only be successful in enhancing the energy security of the European Union, if they act together. CEEP’s status as a nonprofit organization guarantees its independence and transparency.