The Hon. George Pullicino, Minister for Resources and Rural Affairs, was today invited to address the EU-China 2012 High Level Meeting on Energy held in Brussels.
This was an important meeting especially when one considers that the EU and China together consume 35% of the world energy and that the EU has a target to reduce its energy consumption by 20% energy efficiency, while China has a 16% target by 2020.
During the opening address the Commissioner for EU Energy Policy, Mr. Gunther Oettinger, described this meeting as a milestone for bilateral Energy relations between the EU and China. The high level meeting was also addressed by the Chinese Administrator of the National Energy Administration, Mr. Liu Tienan and the Minister for Trade and Investment Ms. Pia Olsen Dyhr representing the EU Presidency.
Minister Pullicino stressed the importance of a fully interconnected energy market in electricity and gas and the cooperation required to develop such energy systems through which resources in different regions can be utilized across borders.
The Minister also referred to recent events in the oil markets which highlighted the importance of adequate security stocks and the increased dependency on natural gas which requires investment in storage as well as the need for gas interconnection. Minister Pullicino concluded by stating that as a major energy importer, the EU is directly affected by the evolution of networks in neighboring countries. The construction of new interconnection systems beyond the EU is of crucial importance to the EU.
The meeting was also addressed by other Ministers from the EU and China and was closed by the President of the European Commission, Mr. Barroso and the Vice Chairman of the People Republic of China Mr. Li Keqiang.