Photo: James Watson, CEO at SolarPower Europe, launching the Emerging Markets Task Force at Eni's Brussels offices

SolarPower Europe launches Emerging Markets Task Force

By: Mate Heisz, Business Analyst

On 13 March, SolarPower Europe held the kick-off meeting of its new Emerging Markets Task Force, an initiative of our member Eni. The meeting was opened by Hans van Steen, Advisor to the Director of Renewables, Research and Innovation, Energy Efficiency at DG Energy in the European Commission, Felice Zaccheo, Head of Unit, Sustainability and Climate Change at DG DEVCO in the European Commission and Luca Cosentino, Executive Vice-President of Eni Energy Solutions. The meeting was a major success, with more than 50 participants and a great deal of constructive and useful input from European companies as well as policy makers on how to improve solar market access across the world. 


In his opening speech, Hans van Steen gave an overview of the various international political initiatives and platforms promoting renewables and supported by the Commission, such as G7, G20, IRENA, the Clean Energy Ministerial, as well as a number of bilateral energy dialogues of the EU with countries such as China, India and Mexico. Van Steen welcomed SolarPower Europe's initiative, and stressed that the Commission would be happy to work with the Emerging Markets Task Force.

Felice Zaccheo then presented the various financing instruments of the EU providing financing for renewable energy projects in emerging markets. He encouraged the participants to make use of the available public instruments and reach out to EU Delegations in emerging countries for market information.

James Watson, CEO of SolarPower Europe, then outlined the key objectives of the Emerging Markets Task Force: sharing best practices, engaging emerging countries' governments, leveraging EU external action, providing market information, and elaboration of analyses and recommendation papers. In the pursuing discussion participants stressed, among other things, the importance of a definition what an 'emerging market' is, working together with international institutions and establishing local contacts. The participants then also discussed the main challenges they faced in emerging markets.

"Solar is booming globally with huge market potential in developing regions in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Middle East. This is the right moment to launch the emerging markets task force to stake out business opportunities that can connect European and emerging solar players" said Christian Westermeier, President of SolarPower Europe.

The first working meeting of the Emerging Markets Task Force will take place in May 2018. Get in touch if you would like to be part of this initiative.

In March, SolarPower Europe also launched its Emerging Markets newsletter with the aim of providing regular updates on relevant tenders, trade missions and events in emerging PV markets outside of the EU. You can subscribe to the Emerging Markets newsletter by sending an email to Mate Heisz.