During its presidency Montenegro will be in charge of organizing and hosting several large institutional meetings, including the Ministerial Council of the Energy Community, Heli Annika Lesjak of the Energy Community told Balkan Insight. These events will be hosted in Podgorica next autumn.
In Montenegro, the relevant government body for the Energy Community is the Ministry of Economy, led by Vladimir Kavaric.
It is a “pure coincidence” that the Montenegrin presidency coincides with Montenegro’s push to become “the energy hub of the Balkans” and the main transmitting route for energy export from the Balkans to Italy, Lesjak said.
Presidency turns are decided in alphabetical order, and Montenegro is succeeding this year’s president, Moldova.
The Energy Community, established in 2006, aims to extend the internal EU energy market to South East Europe, encourage regional cross-border energy trade and the region’s interconnection to the EU energy market.
The stakeholders of the organization are the European Union, and nine contracting parties from Eastern Europe, Albania, Bosnia, Croatia, Macedonia Montenegro, Moldova, Serbia, Ukraine, and Kosovo. The EU contributes 98 per cent of Energy Community’s budget, while other contracting parties contribute the rest. The seat of the organization is in Vienna.
Adoption of a Regional Energy Strategy and of the related Investment Plan have been listed amongst the priorities of the forthcoming Montenegrin presidency of Energy Community.