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Exploring enhanced investment in Azerbaijan’s renewable energy sector

Sustainable development must be underpinned by sustainable energy systems. In Azerbaijan, the government has adopted the increased use of renewable energy sources as a priority area for the country.

To support this objective, Azerbaijan is planning for the installation of stations designed for renewable energy sources, with a projected total capacity of around 420 Megawatts, guided by its Strategic Road Map 2020 for the development of utilities (electricity and thermal energy, water and gas supply).

What are the challenges to the development of renewables in the country? What kinds of approaches, innovation and partnerships can help to overcome these, ensuring the country meets its targets? What measures can foster private sector investment to take advantage of Azerbaijan’s significant and largely untapped renewable energy potential?

These questions were the focus of the latest in the series of “Renewable Energy Hard Talk” events, organized in Baku on 19-20 October 2017. “New Opportunities for Developing Renewable Energy in Azerbaijan”, held on Azerbaijan’s national Energy Day, was a first of its kind dialogue in the country, built around a practical problem/solution discussion format to help achieve a common view on the actions needed to meet the country’s renewable energy targets. The multi-stakeholder exchange brought together over 40 representatives of policy and decision-makers, project developers, investors, technology providers and NGOs as well as international donors and financial institutions.

The discussions provided an opportunity to highlight progress in Azerbaijan’s renewable energy sector, and to exchange perspectives on further development prospects, with a focus on the stimulation of foreign investment.

The case for renewables was clear: the development of renewable energy will enhance long-term energy security and boost the national economy through increasing export revenues by saving natural gas and electricity energy in consumption.

Participants discussed a prioritized set of legal, regulatory, technical and financial recommendations which could jumpstart investments in renewable energy and improve project bankability, streamlining procedures and cost reduction in project development.

The discussions were informed by the findings of the REN21 UNECE Renewable Energy Status Report 2017, which highlights Azerbaijan’s renewable energy development within the broader regional context, assessing progress made, latest trends and emerging issues to be tackled.

The Hard Talk event was organized by UNECE together with the State Agency for Alternative and Renewable Energy Sources of the Republic of Azerbaijan, within the context of the “RE-Uptake” project undertaken by the German Energy Agency (dena) and supported by the Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and Energy. “RE-Uptake” supports know-how transfer on renewable energy within the UNECE region.

For more information, please visit https://www.unece.org/energy/re.html or contact gianluca.sambucini@unece.org