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News in Brief, BB200612

EU launches Global Renewable Energy Fund

15.01.2007

The EU proposes the Global Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Fund (GEEREF)   On 6 October 2006, the European Commission adopted a communication proposing the creation of a global risk capital fund to mobilise private investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy projects for the benefit of developing countries and economies in transition. The Global Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Fund (GEEREF) aims at the acceleration of the transfer, the development and deployment of environmentally sound technologies in the poorer regions of the world.

The Commission intends to start the fund with a contribution of 80 million EUR over the next four years (2007 – 2010), starting with 15 million EUR in 2007. Financing from other public and private sources is expected to take funding up to 100 million EUR. The total funds mobilised for the financing of investment projects would be at least 300 million EUR but could go up to 1 billion EUR in the longer term.

GEEREF will stimulate the creation of regional sub-funds of 30-40 million EUR each which will be adapted to the local needs and conditions in the ACP region (Africa, the Caribbean, and Pacific), the countries of the European Neighbourhood (non-EU Eastern Europe including Russia, North Africa), Latin America and Asia (including Central Asia and the Middle East).

The fund, which will support energy efficiency and renewable energy project developers and SMEs, will mainly focus on investments below 10 million EUR as these are mostly ignored by commercial investors and finance institutions. Investments will include utility-based projects, manufacturing and assembly businesses, consumer, SME and micro-finance intermediaries.

GEEREF participation will range from between 15% for low risk operations to 25% to 50% for medium to high risk operations. In addition, the fund will include dedicated technical assistance funds, which will amount to 10-20% of the total fund size.

GEEREF’s expected benefits are the delivery of almost 1 Gigawatt of environmentally sound energy capacity to third country markets, serving 1-3 million people with sustainable energy services and saving 1-2 million tones of CO 2 emissions per annum.

The proposal draws on the Patient Capital Initiative (PCI), launched by the EC in 2004 in the context of the Johannesburg Renewable Energy Coalition (JREC). The scope of this initiative was guided by the debates at the World Summit for Sustainable Development (WSSD) of 2002 and at the JREC high-level conference held in Brussels in 2003. The initiative builds on a feasibility study of 2004 that assessed various options for designing a new targeted public-private financing partnership.

The implementation of the Global Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Fund will be facilitated by Triodos International Fund Management in conjunction with E+Co. The European Investment Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and other interested parties will closely cooperate on this.

For more information, please consult the dedicated website: http://ec.europa.eu/environment/jrec/energy_fund_en.htm

You can access a presentation on GEEREF here.

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