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Regional Workshop on the Joint Study 'Gobitec and the Asian Supergrid' for Renewables in Northeast Asia

The partners of the regional study 'Gobitec and the Asian Supergrid' for renewable energy sources in Northeast Asia held a regional workshop on 26-27 September 2013 in Irkutsk, Russian Federation. "Gobitec" is a new industrial initiative, where electricity is produced from renewable energy sources in the desert regions of Mongolia and China and brought to the industrial centres of Mongolia, China, the Republic of Korea and Japan via high-voltage lines. The "Asian Supergrid" initiative aims to construct high-voltage transmission lines throughout Northeast Asia and interconnect the national grids of Japan, the Republic of Korea, China, Mongolia and Russia in order to utilise abundant renewable energy sources of East Siberia and the Gobi desert.

The study is implemented with the assistance of a consultant, Fraunhofer ISI, Germany. The regional study partners are:

  • Energy Charter Secretariat
  • Energy Economics Institute of the Republic of Korea
  • Energy Systems Institute of the Russian Federation
  • Ministry of Energy of Mongolia
  • Japan Renewable Energy Foundation

The core objective of the joint study is to provide Northeast Asian countries and the international community with reliable information and data concerning the potential of renewable energy sources in the region. The study also aims to stimulate the interest of the private sector and international investors, and to provide recommendations on maximising international and regional cooperation in order to promote the "Gobitec and the Asian Supergrid" initiative.

The workshop provided a forum for participating partners to exchange views and information on the ongoing regional study. Discussion focused on identifying the main opportunities and challenges of the two industrial initiatives – Gobitec and the Asian Supergrid. Energy experts discussed complex issues related to:

  • perspectives on integrating renewable energy sources in the region of Northeast Asia
  • available technologies and cost implications
  • legal frameworks for promoting regional cooperation and investment
  • benefits and challenges of regional integration
  • policy measures aimed at maximising international and regional cooperation.