Multilateral Meeting strengthens IEA’s global leadership role

Countries representing 75% of global energy demand discussed ways to deepen cooperation on clean energy transitions at meeting co-chaired by senior representatives from Japan and India

Representatives from countries covering 75% of global energy demand today took part in a multilateral meeting organised by the IEA to discuss key issues such as enhancing international cooperation and accelerating clean energy transitions.

The Multilateral Meeting of IEA Accession, Association and Member Countries took place virtually and was co-chaired by Ambassador Hiroshi Oe of Japan, the Chair of the IEA Governing Board, and Mr Sanjiv Nandan Sahai, Secretary of India’s Ministry of Power.

The meeting brought together representatives of the expanded “IEA Family,” which is made up of its 30 members as well as eight Association countries (Brazil, China, India, Indonesia, Morocco, Singapore, South Africa and Thailand) and two countries seeking accession to full membership, Chile and Lithuania.

Thanks to the Agency’s successful policy of opening its doors to emerging economies, the IEA has expanded its role in recent years and is taking a leadership role in guiding partner countries with policies and recommendations for successful and secure clean energy transitions.

At the multilateral meeting today, senior representatives of many of these countries highlighted the benefits that the IEA brings for them, discussed areas where cooperation can be strengthened, and shared thoughts on key elements of their clean energy transitions such as renewable technologies and hydrogen.

“Today’s meeting was another milestone in the development of our cooperation and dialogue in the IEA family. It is clear that Association has been a resounding success, and we should build on this to strengthen our cooperation even further,” said Ambassador Oe. “Also, the accession process has shown progress, and some other countries are showing serious interest in accession. We are moving forward despite the challenges of Covid-19.”

Notably, India and the IEA have been discussing a potential strategic partnership that would enable India to deepen its relationship with the Agency beyond its current status as an Association country.

“India and the IEA have cooperated extensively and substantively over a full spectrum of energy-related initiatives, including the India 2020 Energy Policy Review,” said Mr Sahai. “We are committed to strongly engage with the IEA in the period ahead and hope that all these consultations will help us take this matter forward in a way that is mutually beneficial."

Dr Fatih Birol, the IEA’s Executive Director, underlined that the agency is providing critical support to countries with the aim of reducing emissions and speeding up their clean energy transitions.

“No country is an energy island,” said Dr Birol. “We need to learn from each other and share our experiences so we can all benefit. The IEA is an organisation that looks at all fuels and technologies, with a focus on data, analysis and policy recommendations – but also real-world impact. We work directly with major emerging economies to support the development and implementation of key policies and projects that help them pursue their energy and climate goals.”