1. The Fifth East Asia Summit (EAS) Energy Ministers Meeting (EMM) was held on 20 September 2011 in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei Darussalam. The Meeting was chaired by Hon. Pehin Dato Mohammad Yasmin Umar, Minister of Energy at the Prime Minister’s Office of Brunei Darussalam, and co-chaired by H.E. Keiro Kitagami, Vice Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan. The Meeting was attended by the Ministers and senior officials responsible for energy from the EAS Participating Countries, namely ASEAN Member States, Australia, People’s Republic of China, Republic of India, Japan, Republic of Korea, New Zealand, Russian Federation and the United States. The Secretary-General of ASEAN was also in attendance.
2. While recognising that the global energy demand is on an upward trend reflecting the recovery of the global economy over the past year, the Ministers warned of the likelihood of greater volatility in global energy markets in view of recent uncertainties in the developed economies going forward. However, noting that energy demand in Asia continues to register significant increases, the Ministers urged EAS to take full advantage of this shift in growth pattern with Asia as a background to enhance EAS energy cooperation to greater heights.
3. In this regard, to mitigate the growing demand for energy, the Ministers welcomed the energy-saving targets and action plans, made on a voluntary basis, and shared by the EAS countries concerned. The Ministers encouraged the continued updating and information sharing on the use of energy-saving technologies. The Ministers welcomed the implementation, on a voluntary basis, of the Energy Efficiency Roadmap Formulation Project in certain sectors of the interested countries and a fact-finding survey on sectoral energy-saving potentials that reflect the progress of action plans of the interested countries. The Ministers expressed appreciation to Lao PDR for hosting the Energy Efficiency Conference on 24 August 2011 and noted the Conference’s policy recommendations in the fields of energy efficiency and conservation, renewable energy, energy security and others.
4. The Ministers acknowledged the advancements made by the Biofuels for Transport and Other Purposes Work Stream through the enhancement of the Biofuels Database in East Asia, implementation of the Researcher’s Invitation Program, updating of the EAS-ERIA Biodiesel Fuel Trade Handbook, and upgrading of the sustainability assessment methodology for biomass utilisation. In furtherance of the Work Stream’s efforts, the Ministers recognised and welcomed its 2011-2012 Work Plan geared towards: i) the uploading of more data and information in the database whereby website links to focal organizations are established; ii) firm implementation of the researchers invitation program; iii) formulation of quality standard, as well as quality control and management methods to harmonise utilisation of biodiesel fuel in EAS; and iv) enhancement of research outputs for the establishment of a standardised biomass utilisation assessment methodology in EAS countries.
5. The Ministers reaffirmed the importance of establishing efficient, transparent, reliable, competitive and flexible energy markets as a means to provide affordable, secure and clean energy supplies for the region. Towards this end, the Ministers welcomed the Energy Market Integration Work Plan 2012, which aims to address impediments to the efficient functioning of markets by focusing on activities to (i) enhance energy infrastructure and (ii) facilitate greater energy trade and investment across the region. The Ministers also noted the outcomes of ERIA’s report on Energy Market Integration, which highlighted the need to further strengthen and expedite market integration efforts, given factors such as the Asian premium oil prices, the need for competitive energy markets and pricing, and the benefits of energy access for economic growth.
6. In order to enhance EAS energy cooperation, the Ministers noted that sharing medium-to-long term outlooks for energy demand is important, given the relatively large increase in energy demand in the region, the negative impact of the situation in the Middle East and North Africa, high crude oil prices, and the earthquake, Tsunami, disasters and nuclear accidents in Japan. In this regard, the Ministers encouraged a close cooperation with international organisations such as International Energy Agency (IEA), in this work.
7. In addition to the ongoing cooperation under the existing three main Work Streams of the EAS Energy Cooperation Task Force, namely energy efficiency, market integration and biofuels for transport, the Ministers shared the view that going forward cooperation amongst EAS participating countries would benefit from an increased focus on the following areas: (i) charting outlook for energy demand and saving potential over the medium-to-long term; (ii) coordinating emergency response policies and measures; (iii) enhancing the use of existing fossil fuel resources in the region; (iv) improving electric power infrastructure, including nuclear power generation; and (v) developing clean energy and smart communities for efficient use of energy in the region. To initiate the cooperation, the Ministers agreed to commence research studies in these areas to be undertaken by Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA) with support from Japan.
8. Acknowledging the close correlation between energy and climate changes, the Ministers reiterated their commitment to actively contribute to global measures to cope with climate change issues. As part of such measures, the Ministers noted the use of new market-based mechanisms, including bilateral initiatives, to reduce greenhouse gas emissions on a global scale through diffusion of low carbon technologies, products and services. The Ministers also encouraged cooperation between EAS countries and the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) economies in the areas of mass transportation and other demand side energy management issues towards reducing energy intensity in the transportation sector as the transportation accounts for a substantial share of total energy use and greenhouse gas emissions.
9. The Ministers appreciated ERIA’s support on the various work streams of the East Asia Summit (EAS) Energy cooperation Task Force (ECTF), and agreed to continue ongoing cooperation with ERIA for research studies on relevant issues. Inputs and policy recommendations from ERIA on the EAS energy cooperation, as stated in the paragraph 7, would be welcomed as material for continued policy discussions at the ministerial meetings from next year on.
10. The Meeting welcomed the participation of Russia and the United States in the EAS Energy Cooperation, which will greatly contribute to and provide additional opportunities in the promotion of the EAS energy agenda and priorities.
11. The Ministers agreed to meet again in Cambodia in 2012 for further development of EAS energy cooperation.
12. The Ministers expressed their appreciation to the Government and people of Brunei Darussalam for the warm hospitality accorded and the excellent arrangements made for the 5th EAS EMM.
LIST OF MINISTERS AND HEADS OF DELEGATION
- Hon. Martin Ferguson AM MP, Minister for Resources and Energy of Australia;
- Hon. Pehin Dato (Dr) Mohammad Yasmin Umar, Minister of Energy, at the Prime Minister’s Office of BruneiDarussalam;
- H.E. Dr Ith Praing, Secretary of State, Ministry of Industry, Mines and Energy of Cambodia;
- Mr. Wu Gui Hui, Chief Engineer and Director General of International Cooperation, National EnergyAdministration of China;
- H.E. R.P.N Singh, Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas of India;
- H.E. Darwin Zahedy Saleh, Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources of the Republic of Indonesia;
- H.E. Keiro Kitagami, Vice Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry of Japan;
- H.E. Soulivong Daravong, Minister of Energy and Mines of Lao PDR;
- Hon. Dato’ Sri Peter Chin Fah Kui, Minister of Energy, Green Technology and Water of Malaysia;
- H.E. Than Htay, Union Minister for Energy of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar;
- H.E. David Pine, High Commissioner to Malaysia and Brunei Darussalam on behalf of the Minister of Energy and Resources of New Zealand;
- H.E. Jose Rene D. Almendras, Secretary, Department of Energy, the Republic of the Philippines; H.E. Jaedo Moon, Deputy Minister of Knowledge Economy of the Republic of Korea;
- H.E Yuri Sentyurin, State Secretary, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation;
- H.E. S. Iswaran, Minister, Prime Minister’s Office and Second Minister for Home Affairs and Trade & Industry of Singapore;
- H.E. Pichai Naripthaphan, Minister of Energy of Thailand;
- H.E Ambassador Carlos Pascual, Special Envoy and International Coordinator for Energy Affairs of the State Department of the United States;
- H.E. Le Duong Quang, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade of Viet Nam; and
H.E. Dr. Surin Pitsuwan, Secretary-General of ASEAN.