The 5th Steering Committee of the Global Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centres (GN-SEC) was convened by the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) with support of the Governments of Austria, Norway and Spain, between 5th and 8th September 2022 at the Vienna International Centre.
In the meeting the heads of ten centres, representing various economic communities and more than 108 developing countries from the Africa Arab region, Asia Pacific, Latin America and Caribbean, concluded with a clear message: “In times of fossil fuel price and climate escalations, more than ever, regional cooperation is needed to accelerate the transition towards renewables and energy efficiency”.
However, all delegates highlighted the difficulties to access climate financing for cross-border activities promoting coherence and equal progress among countries, harmonisation of policies and standards, replication of best practice and joint learning, quality infrastructure, as well as bundling of projects and de-risking of investments. Therefore, it was agreed to advocate jointly for a better recognition of the “missing regional link” at COP27.
During the meeting, the participating centres reviewed the annual work plan of the GN-SEC platform, which facilitates south-south and triangular cooperation on common energy issues and solutions. The meeting also identified priority themes for joint approaches and implementation, including industrial energy efficiency, renewable energy for productive uses, green entrepreneurship and innovation, electric mobility, innovative financing instruments and business models, digitalisation, green hydrogen and ocean energy.
The GN-SEC program was launched in 2010. Under a common platform, UNIDO assists regional economic communities in developing countries in the creation of sustainable energy centres, which drive and accelerate the energy transition “from the region for the region”. Today, the network comprises ten centres in the Arab and African region (ECOWAS, SADC, EAC, Arab League, ECCAS), Asia and Pacific (SPC, ICIMOD, ECO), as well as Latin America (CARICOM, SICA).
The centres serve thirty-eight of fourty-six least developed countries (LDCs) and thirty-two of thirty-six small island developing states (SIDS). The global GN-SEC platform, hosted by UNIDO in Vienna, Austria, facilitates joint coordination, learning, programs, events and initiatives between the centres and various regions. It provides a "virtual" maker-space for south-south and triangular cooperation, activities and joint project proposals.
Mr. Martin Lugmayr,
Energy Systems and Infrastructure Division,