Barcelona, 2 December 2014. On 26 November MedReg held the first Mediterranean Forum on Energy Regulation, an initiative supported by the European Commission (EC) with the objective of creating a Mediterranean Energy Community. Dedicated to “Regulation & Investments: Solutions for the Mediterranean Region”, the Forum represented a unique opportunity to review the current state of thinking on the relationship between energy regulation and investments, identify the main challenges and risks and assess how they can be addressed both at regional and sub-regional level.
“MedReg’s strategy for the coming years gives priority to the creation of an integrated Mediterranean Energy Community. The Mediterranean Forum on Energy Regulation is the natural framework for all interested institutions and stakeholders to meet, discuss and identify the necessary principles to set-up an interconnected Mediterranean market in the medium term. This Forum will positively contribute to the current work of regulators, both at national and regional levels, ensuring affordability and sustainability while promoting market competition”, underlined Michel Thiollière, President of MedReg.
UfM Secretariat Deputy Secretary General for Energy Teresa Ribeiro participated at the Closing Roundtable of the Mediterranean Forum on Energy Regulation. In a context in which energy security and climate change will continue to be more and more present at the top of international, national and regional agendas, Teresa Ribeiro reminded participants of the benefits of renewable energy and energy efficiency measures in the Mediterranean region, stating that “in the new economic paradigm, renewable energy as well as energy efficiency open new horizons, including technological development and skilled jobs”. DSG Ribeiro also outlined the elements on the ground that allow for and mobilise this very essential cooperation in the region; these elements are mainly the geographical proximity, the existing complementarities among Mediterranean rims, the common challenges to be faced and the present economic interdependencies.
Other high-level speakers debated the regulatory challenges faced by most Mediterranean countries as a result of rapidly changing consumption patterns in electricity and gas; the alternative cooperation strategies and the role of renewable energy sources; as well as the investments and financial mechanisms required in order to build the appropriate grids and generation projects. The discussion showed that independent and reliable regulation is a guarantee for a stable investment-friendly regulatory framework to build prosperity in the region.