The Energy Charter Conference has issued a declaration following the 29th meeting of its Members. This year’s conference, hosted by Romania, focused on the role of innovation in driving energy security, sustainability and prosperity.
The declaration reiterates commitment to the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT) and the principles of the 2015 International Energy Charter. However, it also commits to starting discussions on the modernisation of the ECT, which it describes as “essential” to address developments in the energy sector, including decarbonisation, digitalisation and electrification. The planned modernisation is also intended to “bring the investment protection of the ECT in line with modern standards … while considering the legitimate right of governments to regulate”. The conference approved a wide-ranging list of topics for the modernisation discussions, which is available here.
In addition to the modernisation plans, the declaration also makes the following points:
- governments have a high degree of responsibility to create an environment conducive for investment in the energy sector;
- the importance of combating energy poverty and addressing climate change, including by encouraging investments in energy efficiency;
- the importance of increasing energy security by developing international cooperation and innovation; and
- the importance of improving security and reliability of cross-border energy flows.
The full text of the declaration is available here.
The Energy Charter Treaty was signed in 1994 and came into effect in 1998. There are currently 51 state members as well as the EU and Euratom. Jordan is due to become a Contracting Party on 11 December 2018, following ratification of the ECT by its parliament in April this year.
For further information please contact Andrew Cannon, Partner, Joel Halliday, Associate, or your usual Herbert Smith Freehills contact.