AER President Riccardo Illy spoke today at the Structured Dialogue of the Committee of the Regions, in presence of the President of the European Commission, Mr Barroso. Despite the common efforts at EU level to improve energy access and affordability, there are still major bottlenecks in the infrastructure for energy. The energy infrastructure, e.g. electricity and gas, is not planned and implemented at European level but in a national context. If the EU market is to be truly common, the energy infrastructure also needs to be liberalised; at present, a lack of affordable energy hampers regional economic growth. The development of renewable energy sources is not only a condition to get away from energy dependency and to limit global warming. It is also a unique opportunity to develop a strong comparative advantage in a field that requires a high level of innovative skills and knowledge-based resources.
Mr Barroso emphasised during the meeting that energy will be a key priority in the future.