Assess the added value, feasibility and financial sustainability of an ECO Clean Energy Centre (CECECO)
In the context of ECO Vision 2025, ECO Energy Strategy, ECO Clean Energy Corridors and the Global Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centers (GN-SEC) Program, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO), with the financial support of the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), resolved on assisting the ECO Member States in the establishment of the ECO Clean Energy Centre (hereinafter CECECO). ECO Member States include: Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
The idea of establishment of CECECO was pioneered as the outcome of ECO-UNIDO consultations held in Vienna and Tehran over the past few years. This initiative was reflected in the ECO Vision 2025 – key strategic document of ECO – and its Implementation Framework stipulates the establishment of the Centre up to 2025 by ECO Secretariat and ECO Member States. The UN-ECO Resolutions on Cooperation adopted by UNGA sessions in 2014 and 2016, respectively, welcomed the idea of establishment of a regional energy centre with possible assistance of UN agencies. The major general objective of CECECO is the contribution towards increased access to modern, affordable, reliable and sustainable energy services, energy security and mitigation of negative externalities of the energy system (e.g. local pollution and GHG emissions) by creating an enabling environment for renewable energy and robust energy efficiency markets and investments. The project has progressed steadily throughout 2018 in terms of approval procedures and fund-raising.
The CECECO process is closely linked to the other centers operating under the umbrella of the GN-SEC. Energy represents one of the priority areas of cooperation within ECO along with trade and transport. ECO’s energy agenda has recently been undergoing the paradigm shift towards transformation to clean and sustainable energy. This regional mainstream targets on unlocking ECO Region’s tremendous cooperation opportunities in renewables (notably solar, wind, hydro and geothermal) as well as energy efficiency and conservation. The establishment of the Centre will complement and significantly contribute to the existing efforts of ECO to promote energy and transport connectivity in the region.
It has been recognized that there is a lack of ECO Region-wide in-depth analytical studies, which would quantify and evaluate the potential for transition to sustainable energy and investigate constraints to regional cooperation. In the light of the aforementioned and with a view to address the renewables and energy efficiency/conservation issues in an integrated manner, the partners have agreed to undertake a comprehensive consultative preparatory process, which will determine the added value, feasibility as well as the technical and institutional design of the center. The process envisages the broad stakeholder consultations, consultative/validation meetings, a needs assessment, feasibility study, and consideration and approval of a project document which will define the institutional and technical design of the center during the subsequent stage of development – start up/the first operational phase. The expected following project document will be based on the lessons learned from other centers and provide an overview on the preparatory results and activities.