South American leaders examine energy cooperation
Guyana Chronicle
August 1, 2002

Related Links: Articles on South America
Letters Menu Archival Menu

THE possibility of a continental plan to integrate the energy supplies of the South American continent to maximise supplies for energy needs of countries is being examined.

This was revealed by Foreign Minister Rudy Insanally upon his return from the Second Meeting of South American Presidents held in Ecuador on July 26 and 27.

According to Minister Insanally the Presidents have agreed on the importance and need to expand energy cooperation and integration processes in the South. They noted the levels of security, reliability and quality of energy supplies in South America and the appropriateness of developing regional energy markets that observe the principles and practices of sustainable development.

A communiqué issued at the end of the meeting underscored the need for suitable and progressive harmonisation of legal and technical frameworks, especially on matters of energy transport, interconnections, fuel specifications and similar instruments of energy sector trade in the region.

The meeting also addressed the need for private and public investment in the energy sector and in this regard, South American Presidents are determined to work towards the establishment of wider markets and to improve mechanisms that will facilitate direct foreign investment in the region.

Among the proposals examined were the stimulation of electric power interconnections, the potential of natural gas, hydro-electricity, solar and wind energy and bio-fuels.

According to the communiqué, the Presidents ratified their decision to continue implementing programmes to increase electricity service coverage and to increase the quality and reliability of electric power.

The communiqué also emphasised the role of the energy sector in overcoming poverty and indicated that the electrification of rural and marginal urban areas was one of the greatest political, social and economic challenges to the governments of the region. (Government Information Agency - GINA)