On 17 December 2018, the International Energy Charter organised a Conference to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the entry into force of the Energy Charter Treaty (ECT), The Energy Charter Treaty entered into force on 16 April 1998. After the successful update of the political declaration in 2015, it was time to reflect on the lessons learned, objectives achieved and challenges ahead (in particular, the potential Modernisation of the ECT).
In fact, at the end of November, the Conference had adopted the Bucharest declaration which emphasized that the ECT, “as a multilateral framework for investment protection in the energy sector, provides legal instruments that are helpful and complementary to policies and regulations in promoting investments and energy efficiency required to support a sustainable energy future” and reiterated “the importance of the modernisation of the Energy Charter Treaty to guarantee that it keeps providing balanced rules to protect investments that ensure stable energy supply, energy access, and a sustainable energy future”.
The conference took place right after the accession of Jordan to the Treaty and the approval by the Energy Charter Conference of the list of topics for Modernisation of the ECT.
Over 80 participants were in attendance, representing industry, governments, legal circles and academia. Most of them joined the local diplomatic community the same evening for a networking reception.
Opening remarks were delivered by the Secretary General, Dr. Urban Rusnák (speech), Ambassador of Albania H.E. Suela Janina (speech) (in representation of the 2019 Albanian Chairmanship of the Conference), and Mrs. Inês Matos (speech), representing the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Portugal (depositary of the ECT).
The first roundtable discussion was moderated by Mrs. Sofia Sanz Estebanez, chair of the subgroup on Modernisation and as of January 2019, Chair of the Strategy Group. Keynotes speeches were delivered by
H.E. Hala Zawati, Minister of Energy of Jordan (Jordan became a Contracting Party to the Energy Charter Treaty as of 11 September 2018)
H.E. Dilyor Khakimov, Embassy of the Republic of Uzbekistan (speech)
H.E. Kazuo Kodama, Mission of Japan to European Union (extracts from the speech)
Mrs. Megan Richards, Director for Energy Policy, DG Energy – European Commission
The second roundtable was moderated by Mr. Craig Bamberger, former Chair of the Legal Advisory Committee during the negotiations of the ECT. Keynote speeches were delivered by
Mrs. Niuscha Bassiri, Hanotiau & van den Berg
Mr. Nikos Lavranos, Secretary-General of EFILA
Mr. Martins Paparinskis, University College London
Mrs. Shamali de Silva, Chief Counsel, MIGA
The Forum was closed by Dr. Alejandro Carballo Leyda, General Counsel and Head of the Conflict Resolution Centre of the International Energy Charter.
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