EU allocates first tranche to Azerbaijan’s energy strategy
Azerbaijan, Baku, Sept. 16 / Trend E.Ismayilov /
EU released €3 million to the Azerbaijani government within the scope of a dedicated Budget Support Programme. This is the first tranche of an overall support of €14 million that will be given to Azerbaijan by EU, the EU Azerbaijan representation reported.
These funds will support the Government's endeavors to consolidate its national energy strategy. The objective is to develop a fully coherent, integrated and transparent energy strategy which will cover supply, transportation, transit and use of all energy resources. This Budget Support Programme also focuses on the promotion of energy efficiency and renewable energies in Azerbaijan, the report says.
"The strong cooperation the EU and Azerbaijan have established in the energy sector is at the core of our bilateral relationship. Yes this Budget Support Programme is another achievement along this path. Our partnership in the promotion of renewable and energy efficiency is the expression of our commitment to help Azerbaijan diversifying its energy resources and to mitigate the effects of Climate Change. As such, the payment of today is an important milestone for the year 2010 which has been declared the year of ecology in Azerbaijan," said Ambassador Roland Kobia, Head of the EU Delegation.
Budget Support is an instrument utilized by the EU and other donors to assist governments in implementing their key strategies reforms in full ownership. It consists in providing transfer of foreign exchange to the treasury following the realization of the key objectives of a given reform. Budget Support stimulates the establishment of a policy dialogue between the beneficiary country and the EU.
Technical assistance funds under the program will be used in three ways: as a instrument for sectoral budget support, for a twinning program and for technical assistance. It is expected that 5 million euros will be allocated to about five projects in the twinning program, and 14 million euros (one million euros is provided for the technical assistance instrument of budget support) to the other two components. The energy sector was selected for budget support, namely for legislative and administrative reforms in this sector through the funding of the budget.
Funds to the state budget will be transferred in three tranches. Unlike the first tranche of 3 million euros, the next two will be accompanied by Azerbaijan's fulfillment of certain conditions required by EU.