Austria, UNIDO to Support Sustainable Energy Centers in SIDS
17 March 2014: The Government of Austria and the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to support regional sustainable energy promotion centers for small island developing States (SIDS) in the Caribbean, the Pacific and the Indian Ocean.
The purpose of the centers is to promote an enabling environment for regional renewable energy and energy efficiency markets, while strengthening resilience to climate change and facilitating South-South and North-South partnerships on knowledge and technology transfer.
The MOU was signed in Vienna, Austria, by Michael Linhart, Austrian Federal Ministry for Europe, Integration and Foreign Affairs, who stressed that the Austrian support "can be seen as an important contribution to the UN Secretary-General's Sustainable Energy For All Initiative and the 2014 International Year of Small Island Developing States.”
Li Yong, Director General of UNIDO, highlighted that the “centers will boost inclusive and sustainable industrial development and empower the local private sector by creating new jobs and investment opportunities in the energy sector.”
To achieve these goals, the centers will focus on policy implementation, capacity building, knowledge management, awareness raising, investment, and business promotion, in coordination with various regional organizations, including the Secretariat of the South Pacific (SPC), the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environmental Programme (SPREP), and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). The centers will also will participate in the UNIDO Global Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centres. In addition, partners will work together to establish a coordination unit for African SIDS. [UNIDO Press Release]