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India, EU agree to enhance clean energy and climate partnership

NEW DELHI: India and the EU have agreed on a detailed work programme until 2023 to implement the 2016 EU-India Clean Energy and Climate Partnership with a focus on increasing technical cooperation in the area of energy efficiency, renewable energy, cooperation within the International Solar Alliance and green hydrogen.

This discussion took place during the EU-India Energy Panel meet on December 1, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement. The Energy Panel was co-chaired by Reenat Sandhu, Secretary (West), Ministry of External Affairs and Mechthild Worsdorfer, Deputy Director-General for Energy, European Commission.

"The Energy Panel agreed on increased technical cooperation in the area of energy efficiency, including on nearly zero energy buildings, smart readiness indicators for buildings; renewable energy, including floating solar, thermal solar and offshore wind; cooperation within the International Solar Alliance; green hydrogen; grid integration, including smart grids, storage, power market design, interconnection, cold chain, and sustainable financing," MEA said.

As part of this strengthened cooperation, India and the EU will undertake new studies, study visits and joint workshops, exchanging knowledge and best practices on these areas.

In addition, the Energy Panel agreed to jointly host/organize the India-EU offshore wind business and investment summit in the first half of next year, with an exhibition of European and Indian companies, B2B facilitation and sessions on decreasing the cost of offshore wind and of financing offshore wind.

Both sides decided to hold India-EU High-Level Platform on Smart Grid Replication, identifying possible opportunities and barriers for replicating and upscaling smart grid projects in India.

They also agreed on India-EU Hydrogen Forum with a focus on exchanging best practices/ policies on the role of hydrogen in energy systems with high share of renewable energy, discussing the state of play of clean hydrogen production and application technologies and sharing information on existing and upcoming hydrogen projects in India and the EU.

The two sides will also organise India-EU Financing Investment in Clean Energy Platform, aiming at encouraging investment in the field of energy efficiency and renewable energy. According to the MEA statement, the Panel welcomed the fact that more and more EU Member States are joining the International Solar Alliance.

"The EU recently funded an approximately 1 million Euro project, with an aim to further strengthen the engagement of EU, its Member States, and its academic, business and financial communities with the International Solar Alliance. The Panel agreed to explore further avenues to strengthen India-EU cooperation within the context of the International Solar Alliance. In this respect, India underlined the importance of ISA's One Sun One World One Grid Initiative," the statement said.

The EU also expressed its support for the close cooperation between India and the International Energy Agency. India and the EU also agreed to exchange closely on clean energy in the frame of the G20. India and the European Union are closely cooperating on climate action and on ensuring affordable, clean and secure energy, which is a focus area for both sides.

The current India-EU climate and energy relations are guided by the India-EU Clean Energy and Climate Partnership as agreed at the India-EU Summit on March 30, 2016, with the aim of reinforcing cooperation in the area of the clean energy transition and the implementation of the Paris Agreement.

This partnership was reconfirmed in the joint statement at the India-EU Summit on October 6, 2017. The Joint Statement and the India-EU Strategic Partnership: A Roadmap to 2025 agreed at the India-EU Summit on July 15, 2020, as well as the Joint Statement adopted at the India-EU Leaders Meeting on May 8, 2021, also welcomed the strengthening of cooperation under the Clean Energy and Climate Partnership.

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