IEA for EU4Energy Forum discusses energy security including lessons learned from Ukraine and Moldova

The IEA for EU4Energy Policy Forum gathered officials from five Eastern European partner countries this week to discuss how to strengthen energy security and system resiliency in the midst of war and a global energy crisis, with Moldovan and Ukrainian government officials sharing their recent experiences.

Joined by representatives from the European Commission, participants recounted how they were implementing energy policies using lessons learned over the past 12 months. The IEA presented key energy security insights from the World Energy Outlook 2022 and emphasized the importance of data for preparing emergency response scenarios.

During the workshop, the IEA highlighted progress on the second phase of its EU4Energy programme, which promotes low-carbon and clean energy transitions in the Eastern Partnership, a joint initiative involving the European Union, its member states and its Eastern European Partners: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. The IEA is working with Ukraine on strengthening energy security through effective regulation, market liberalisation, diversified and increased production, and energy efficiency.

The European Commission also presented the EU’s energy response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, including its work to diversify gas supply and invest in the clean energy transition. It also highlighted its relationship with the Eastern Partnership countries on a variety of energy security areas.

One year since Russia’s invasion, Ukraine’s transmission system remains operational. However, its thermal, nuclear, hydro and renewable energy generation have either been damaged by targeted Russian attacks or now operate in Russian-occupied territory. As a result, a new policy framework is needed to help the country rebuild its infrastructure with an emphasis on security and sustainability.

Moldova remains heavily reliant on imports for its energy needs, particularly natural gas, which now comes primarily from Romania but previously came mostly from Russia via pipelines through Ukraine. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has underscored that Moldova’s long-term energy security depends on diversifying its supplies – and that achieving this aim requires learning from its neighbours’ experiences and investing further in both renewables and energy efficiency.  

Participants at the event agreed that international collaboration on knowledge sharing and physical interconnection, as well as new investment, was needed to strengthen regional energy systems. These efforts should be combined with an investment in building out renewables such as wind and solar to reduce dependency on imports, as well as exploring new power system models that are less centralised. Such an approach would protect citizens by diversifying supply and mitigating the system-wide impacts of future shocks, including military aggression.

Ukraine officially joined the IEA as an Association country in July 2022 with the signing of a joint declaration by Ukraine’s Minister of Energy German Galushchenko and IEA Executive Director Fatih Birol. Having Association status opens a new chapter in Ukraine’s longstanding partnership with the IEA to deepen and expand work on the country’s energy security, clean energy transition and reconstruction efforts.

*As of 28 June 2021, Belarus has suspended its participation in the Eastern Partnership.

About EU4Energy

The IEA is leading the implementation of the EU4Energy Programme funded by the European Union (EU) for 6 countries of the EU’s Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus*, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine.

The programme’s aim is to work with these countries to improve energy data capabilities and enhance data collection and monitoring, and assist them in evidence-based energy policy design relevant to the country’s needs.

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The EU4Energy programme is funded by the European Union