12 May 2007 - 10:57
  • News Code: 104333

LONDON -- The European Union has launched a network that will give early warnings about problems with oil and gas supplies and will support strategic decision-making about energy as a single European entity. The move signals the importance of energy security to the 27-nation bloc.

The EU Network of Energy Security Correspondents (Nesco) met for the first time May 10 in Brussels to gather thoughts on speaking with one voice to energy suppliers amid a background of recently strained relations with Russia over oil and gas supplies and instability in the Middle East and North Africa.


Nesco will work with the European Commission, the Council Secretariat, and member states to monitor EU"s energy supplies. Nesco also will help implement the Energy Policy Action Plan adopted at the European Council in March.


Benita Ferrero-Waldner, European commissioner for external relations and European neighborhood policy, said Nesco also was formed to address climate change—a major priority for the EU—and growing international competition for energy supplies.


The EU is talking to Saudi Arabia and Central Asia nations about energy security and has spoken to China and India about increasing cooperation on both climate and energy security. Ferrero-Waldner said the EU is hoping to progress its Baku Initiative to improve energy cooperation among the EU and countries of the Black Sea, the Caspian basin, and their neighbors. It also is in discussions with Algeria about gas supplies to Spain and Italy.




News Code 104333

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