Press releases

17 November 2011

Enormous increase of the importance of energy sector for the development of states, regions or entire continents,  noticeable for a few years, has confirmed the need for open debate among the key political and business figures about the challenges and threats resulting from the current situation in the energy market. Introduction of innovations, increase of production capacities, investment in transmission infrastructure and extension of cross-border connections, reduction of CO2 emissions – are the major challenges, which are confronted by the energy sector in Central Europe. Solution to these issues depends to a large extent on cooperation among energy concerns, governments, European institutions, regulators and investment banks. The Energy Forum, which has taken place for 5 years (Prague 2006, 2007; Budapest 2008, 2009; Sopot 2010), gathers every year the key market players, facilitating open presentation of positions and discussion about new solutions for this sector.

     One of the major achievements of the European Union in the area of framing the climate-energy policy has been approval of the Europe 20-20-20 package. The main goals of the package include: reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, increase of the share of renewable energy in the energy mix and promotion of energy efficiency. For Poland, energy consumption from renewable sources should increase from 7 to 15% and energy efficiency should be improved by 20%. Joanna Maćkowiak-Pandera, Undersecretary of State in the Ministry of Environment, convinced during the Economic Forum in Krynica-Zdroj that the majority of governments focus on a four-year perspective. In her view, solution to environmental problems should be sought in a much longer perspective, reaching even a few decades. – If we achieve 20% savings in energy consumption, reduction of CO2 emissions can reach the level of 25% – she forecasted. Are the targets specified in 2007 achievable, considering economic difficulties, which are currently experienced by Europe? What can be the cost of eliminating hard coal from the European energy mix and replacing it with other fuels generating lower emission levels? Energy savings, investment spending and costs of reducing gas emissions will be discussed during a panel „EU 20-20-20 package. Are we really approaching emergence of cleaner and more energy independent Europe?”: Colin Imrie, Deputy Minister for Environment and Energy and Director of Low-emission Economy Department in the Scottish government; Rodion Bajureanu, Deputy Minister of Environment of Moldova; Paweł Olechnowicz, President of the Board of Directors of LOTOS Group and Jan Pravda, Managing Director of Carbon Warehouse,

     Privatization in the energy sector in Central Europe has experienced difficulties due to decreasing demand, which is a consequence of the economic crisis; great needs of the state budget and the necessity of huge investment spending in the sector. The major dilemma, which is confronted by state owners of energy assets, comes from the answer to the question: should budget receipts be improved by increasing sales prices, or should the value of economy be increased by extending investment obligations of companies participating in privatization? Participation in the debate „Privatization in the energy sector – in search of the best solutions” devoted to the above issues has been announced by: Jan Bury, Deputy Minister of Treasury in charge of energy sector and Jurij Jakovlev, Vice-president of the State Property Fund of Ukraine, among others.

     Intelligent Energy Networks is a system, which is composed of household meters of new generation, communicating by means of intelligent smart metering software. ISE have the purpose of preventing losses of energy during transfer, effectively store energy and deliver only the amount of energy, which is required at a specific time. What is important in the case of Poland is that introduction of IT solutions to the energy sector can help in meeting requirements contained in the so-called ‘Climate Package’. Nevertheless, in order to take advantage of this potential, it is required to teach the recipients how to use the new system. The chances, which are created by introduction of innovations to energy will be discussed during the panel „Smart Grid – innovations for development” by the representatives of companies, which have actively operated in the sector for a few years:  Jaroslav Zlabek President of Schneider Electric for Poland; Bartosz Wojszczyk, Director for Development of Technology Smart Grid GE Energy and Mirosław Bieliński, President of the Board of ENERGA Group. 

    The Forum is organized by Eastern Institute in Warsaw and the City of Sopot. The partners in the conference are: Energa, Ernst& Young, Gaz-System, Towarowa Giełda Energii S.A., PSE Operator, Norton Rose, Westinghouse, Consus, Schneider Electric, Carbon Warehouse, PKP Energetyka S.A., European Climate Foundation.


Perspectives for development of the European Energy Market

The motto of the 6th Energy Forum will be analysis of the energy policy of the European Union. Discussion will be related to the guidelines of the Common Energy Policy and realization of the Climate and Energy Package of the European Union.  The conference will be attended by the representatives of the most important European institutions and the energy sector, regulatory bodies, leaders in the energy market and experts from the most important European analytical centres. The Forum will take place on from 28th to 30th of November in Sopot. 

The conference will be devoted to the key issues, from the point of view of the EU, related to the energy sector – perspectives for development and integration of the European Energy Market, EU 20-20-20 targets, privatization in the energy sector, the future of nuclear energy and innovative technologies in power industry. Participation in the debates of the Forum has been announced by: Pawel Olechnowicz, President of the Group Lotos SA; Mirosław Bielinski President of the Board of ENERGA SA; Sergiej Bojarkin, Programme Director  in charge of Engineering Projects from the Russian Federal Atomic Energy Agency (ROSATOM); Yves Brachet, President for Europe, Middle East and Africa, Westinghouse Electric Company; Hervé Mignon, Network Development Director representing the French energy operator RTE; Vladivoj Řezník, Engineering Director and Vice-president of Enel; Frédéric Cheneau, Director, The Nuclear Atkins Assystem Alliance, Henryk Majchrzak, President of the Board of PSE-Operator S.A, Andrey Konoplyanik, Adviser to the Board, Gazprombank, and also Virgilijus Poderys, Member of the Board of AB Klaipedos Nafta.

One of important points on the agenda will be the future of nuclear energy in the Old Continent.  The failure of Fukushima nuclear power plant sparked intense discussion about the possibility of departing from nuclear energy. The Japanese experience can halt rapid global expansion of nuclear energy. In Europe, Italy and Switzerland imposed moratoria on nuclear energy, while Germany decided to shut down the oldest seven nuclear reactors, and refrained from starting again the Kruemmel reactor. Germany plans to withdraw gradually from use of their remaining nine reactors in the years 2015-22. Departure from nuclear energy, according to forecasts of analysts, is expected to contribute to increase of CO2 emissions and increase of energy prices.  Are the consequences of German withdrawal from nuclear energy likely to influence the policies of other European governments? How far can it contribute to the development of renewable energy? Participation in the discussion devoted to the future of nuclear energy in Europe has been announced by Hanna Trojanowska, Plenipotentiary of Polish Government for Nuclear Energy; representatives of the biggest nuclear concerns in Europe and analysts of the energy sector.

Integration of the European electric energy market is the latest topic, which has been extensively discussed in recent months in the European Union. Preparation of a fully effective, common electric energy market in Europe is the goal of the third EU energy package, which came into force in the first half of 2011. According to experts, the European market infrastructure, which is created by the 3rd liberalization package, supported by the initiatives of the European Commission for the benefit of integrity and transparency of trade in wholesale energy market, and instruments supporting technical connections, specified in so called infrastructural package, should ensure completion of the integration process until 2014 and lead to elimination of so called energy islands, such as the Baltic States or Malta.

The Forum is organized by Warsaw–based Eastern Institute and the City of Sopot. The partners of the conference are: Energa, Ernst& Young, Schneider Electric, Crowley Data Poland and Carbon Warehouse.



6th Energy Forum

Discussion about European energy issues has always been one of the focal points of the Economic Forum in Krynica, which is confirmed by the special Energy Forum organized for 6 years. Noticeable for a few years, enormous increase in importance of the energy sector for development of states, regions or entire continents has confirmed the rightness of the decision taken a few years ago to devote to this topic a separate meeting. The meeting has the purpose of facilitating open debate among the most important figures of the world of politics and business about the challenges and risks resulting from the current state of affairs and about the way how the Central European region can influence energy policy of the European Union. The subject matter of the Forum has always reflected very closely the key energy challenges of our continent.   

     Debates of the Energy Forum focus on the issues of regulatory policy in the sector, energy security, perspectives for development of nuclear energy, methods of financing transition of national economies to renewable sources, and also the possibilities of cooperation in the area of energy in Central and Eastern Europe. Another important topic, discussed during the Forum in recent years, has been related to the perspectives of mining shale gas in Central Europe.

     The topics of this year's Forum include 'Shale gas: Between business and politics?'; 'Strategies for development of renewable energy in Central and Eastern Europe; 'Integration of electric energy markets in the Baltic Sea Region'; 'Energy 'road map' of Europe- the direction towards integrated market or return to national strategies?'; 'Trade in emissions in the EU and the future of coal-based economies – in search for better solutions', among other things.

     The cycle of meetings held within the scope of the Energy Forum has become a key place for sharing ideas and open debate about the contemporary energy-related issues in Central and Eastern Europe. Currently the Forum is the biggest and the most comprehensive conference in our region. The previous editions of the Forum, which were held in Sopot, Prague and Budapest were visited by the representatives of all most important players in the energy market, including politicians, businessmen and experts from our region and the European Union, Russia and the United States.

     In the previous year, the motto was new energy strategy for Europe, whose content has still been widely discussed on both political and business level.  The task of the strategy is to outline the main goals of the European energy policy in the nearest years. One of its key points is to complete creation of the common energy market in Europe; in order to finalize this project it is required to build a common energy and gas network, modernize and invest in already existing transmission infrastructure. The strategy points to the need of strengthening external energy policy of the European Union, and also the necessity of implementing already existing regulations in the area of energy. The subject matter of the Forum has always corresponded with the most important current challenges of the energy sector. That is why the debates of the Forum this year will be in a special way devoted to the Common Energy Policy and realization of the EU Climate and Energy Package.

      The 6th Energy Forum in Sopot is organized by the Town of Sopot and Foundation Eastern Institute in Warsaw – the organizer of the Economic Forum in Krynica.