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On 14 November 2008, the European Union (EU) and Russia held their 22nd Summit in Nice. Among the topics covered in the course of discussions were energy security and climate change concerns, especially in the context of the looming financial and economic crisis.

On the sidelines of the EU-Russia Summit, the 7th meeting of the "Club de Nice" Forum on the issue of "Energy and Geopolitics" was held. It was attended by industry representatives, top executives of national and international...

At the 2nd Kyiv Security Forum "Black-Caspian Sea Region and European Energy Security" on 6 November 2008, discussion focused on important energy security challenges facing countries in Europe and beyond, and on the more efficient ways of managing the interdependence between energy producers and consumers to the mutual benefit of all parties along the energy value chain.

On 1-5 September 2008, experts from Norway, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria and Germany, supported by staff from the Energy Charter Secretariat, travelled to Bratislava for the Second In-Depth Energy Efficiency Review of the Slovak Republic. In 1999, the Slovak Republic was the first country to undertake an in-depth review under the Energy Charter's Protocol on Energy Efficiency and Related Environmental Aspects (PEEREA). The Slovak Ministry of Economy invited a second review to consider...

In July 2008 Vladimir Rakhmanin became Deputy Secretary General of the Energy Charter Secretariat.

The Secretary General André Mernier travelled to Amman and Damascus on 18-19 June to promote closer association between the countries in the Middle East and the Energy Charter Process. During his visit, Amb. Mernier has held several high-level meetings with representatives of the Jordanian and Syrian governments.

The Central Asian Republic of Turkmenistan possesses very substantial gas reserves and has ambitious plans for their production and export. However, "the realisation of Turkmenistan's vast potential as an exporter of hydrocarbons is largely dependent on the transit of its energy through the territories of neighbouring countries," stated Ambassador André Mernier, Secretary General of the Energy Charter Secretariat, at a high level investment conference in London "Oil and Gas in Turkmenistan" on...

16 April 2008 marked ten years since the Energy Charter Treaty came into full legal force. The Energy Charter Secretariat held a reception at Palais d'Egmont in Brussels to celebrate this anniversary, marking the Treaty's achievements over these years and it's readiness to embrace new challenges posed by international energy markets.

"While this ten-year period is not very long for an international treaty, the Energy Charter Treaty has proven to be a successful and well-functioning legal...

"India has much to gain from the application and expansion of international rules of the game in the energy sector in the broader South Asian sub-continent," stated the Secretary General of the Energy Charter Secretariat, Ambassador André Mernier, during his keynote address at the Fifth Asia Gas Partnership Summit, in New Delhi, 14-15 April 2008. In an event which focused on energy security and the Asian gas market, the Secretary General underlined the fact that endorsement of some of the core...

The reverberating topic of the security of Europe's gas supply featured prominently amongst the discussions at the 14th Annual Flame Conference, which took place in Amsterdam, 3-7 March 2008.

The Energy Charter Conference has invited the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan to become a member of the Energy Charter, opening the way for Afghanistan to accede to the 1994 Energy Charter Treaty.

The decision was taken at the 18th Meeting of the Energy Charter Conference, the governing body for the Energy Charter Process, which met in Istanbul, Turkey, on 7 December 2007. Following the approval of Afghanistan’s accession, the Minister of Economy of Afghanistan, H.E. Mr Jalil Shams, thanked the...

Challenges of international cooperation and the rules governing international energy trade were high on the agenda at the 20th World Energy Congress, which took place in Rome on 11-15 November 2007.

The attached article by the Secretary General André Mernier examines the relevance and role of the Energy Charter Treaty and the Charter's principles in today's energy world. It was published in October 2007 in the Journal 'Energy Technologies from Italy 2007' (www.energiaitalia.com).

Delegates to the Energy Charter's Trade and Transit Group had the chance to see for themselves the growing role of LNG for European gas supply with a site visit to the LNG Terminal in Zeebrugge, Belgium, on 25 October 2007.

The Zeebrugge LNG Terminal is operated by Fluxys and is currently in the process of being expanded following an 'open season' market survey launched in 2003.

Uzbekistan has ambitious plans to expand energy production and export, and sees foreign capital and expertise as an integral part of this strategy. This was the message passed by the Uzbek authorities to the Secretary General André Mernier during his visit to Tashkent on 9-10 October 2007.

The Energy Charter Deputy Secretary General Andrey Konoplyanik was the keynote speaker at the 10th International Conference on the Northeast Asian Natural Gas and Pipeline, which took place in Novosibirsk, the Russian Federation, on 18-19 September 2007.