This article, initially discussed at a conference organised in March 2017 by the Belgian Commission for Electricity and Gas Regulation (CREG) on the new governance structures in the EU energy sector, deals with energy governance structures in the EU energy and climate diplomacy and in development cooperation between the EU, its member states and third countries.
It is understood that, at large, the existing tools of EU energy and climate diplomacy create governance structures: bilateral partnerships, trade agreements, regional and multilateral orders are per se instruments to govern the underlying relationship between the EU, its member states and third countries. The focus in this paper revolves around those instruments of EU energy and climate diplomacy which aim at reinforcing energy governance structures (referred to also as institutional and normative energy frameworks) and promoting solid transparent frameworks in the field of energy in partner countries.
In particular, the paper aims at identifying – among the existing tools of the energy and climate diplomacy –instruments and opportunities in favour of African countries which contribute to strengthening those institutional and normative energy frameworks and facilitate investment towards universal energy access and energy transition. To do so, the paper reviews the existing policy and legal instruments of EU external energy action in general and in Africa and concludes proposing policy recommendations on further development cooperation and energy diplomacy initiatives in favour of African countries.
The first section reviews the principles of EU energy and climate diplomacy and their alignment with development objectives, including the emphasis on strengthening institutional and normative frameworks in the energy sector. The second section considers the internal coordination between the EU and its member states which is necessary to carry out the external energy and climate diplomacy as well as development cooperation. The third section describes the existing tools of the EU energy diplomacy that aim to strengthen energy institutions and frameworks in partner countries. The fourth section reviews a selection of existing EU initiatives in favour of African countries and brings forward a proposal for EU action to reinforce energy governance structures of partner countries in Africa.