The top EU official in charge of creating a new European ´Energy Union´ has accepted an invitation from Ian Duncan, MEP, to visit Scotland later this year.
Maroš Šefčovič, Vice-President of the European Commission with responsibility for Energy, will explore the key role that Scotland can play in creating an energy single market across Europe.
The putative European Energy Union has been described as the EU´s most ambitious plan since the 1950s, and would allow gas and electricity to flow across Europe to where it is most needed. This would drive down costs and also reduce Europe´s reliance on Russian gas.
Dr Duncan – Scotland’s sole Tory MEP, who began his career as a researcher with BP focusing upon Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Republics – said: “I am delighted that Vice-President Šefčovič has agreed to come to Scotland.
“As the oil and gas capital of Europe and a hub for offshore renewable technology, Scotland is ideally placed to contribute to and benefit from the development of the energy union. Of particular relevance will be Aberdeen and the Shetland Islands, home to much of Scotland’s energy industry.
“I look forward to welcoming him at a critical juncture for Energy Union”.
The Energy Union Strategy has received broad support in the European Parliament, from a wide range of stakeholders, and from the European Council, which endorsed the Commission’s Strategy as the basis to build the Energy Union.
Šefčovič said: “Our objectives are clear: we have to get out of our energy dependency; establish a fully integrated and competitive European energy market; give the principle of ‘energy efficiency first’ a central role in our policies; de-carbonise our economy and play an active role to turn the upcoming Climate Conference in Paris into a success”.