On July 6, 2017 in Skopje, the Regional Conference entitled Energy Efficiency - Data Management was held. It was an event within the Horizon 2020 multEE project, organized by the Macedonian Centre for Energy Efficiency (MACEF), the German Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) and the Energy Agency of the Republic of Macedonia.
The conference comes at a time when energy is a key topic on international agendas, and for Macedonia it is especially important because energy efficiency is seen as a both a resource and opportunity for reducing dependence on energy imports to the country.
"It is especially important that representatives of several EU countries and Macedonia, as the only representative from the Western Balkans, who are working together in finding effective ways and mechanisms for creating, implementing and monitoring energy efficiency policies, participate in today's conference", - Marco Acquaticci, Embassy of Germany in Macedonia.
"This project is a great example of the transfer of best practices developed by GIZ in Southeast Europe to EU countries from 2010 onwards. It is also a testament to the fact that the SEE region can contribute to know-how to address complex energy challenges“, - James Macbeth, director of the GIZ Regional Office.
This conference was a medium through which the lessons learned were shared with the countries in the region that did not have direct participation in the project. The conference also was held in order to promote long-term regional planning in the domain of energy, which requires high quality and reliable information on energy consumption.
Prof. d-r Konstantin Dimitrov from MACEF concluded that "the need for preset input information and their wider standardization and acceptance in the region and EU countries is essential because 1% error in input data can cause up to 10% error in the results. All strategic and local action plans for energy development are based on these data. Therefore, the multEE project aims at grouping incoming information, defining the methods and the collection process, identifying appropriate data storage and processing bodies, and verifying the authenticity, as well as controlling the quality of the incoming information. Hence, he stressed the need for introducing this effective tool in the legislation in Macedonia and providing financial and technical support for its implementation. "
Mr. Leonardo Zannier, a representative from the Directorate General for Energy of the European Union, said that "one of the basic approaches to monitoring and managing energy efficiency at many levels is through good regional cooperation practices, furthering the Urban Agenda (promoted in May 2016) to encourage partnerships for energy transition, as well as the Charter of Mayors for the development of Energy Efficiency Action Plans.”
Experts and researchers in the field of energy from Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Kosovo and Greece, as well as representatives from the energy community and the Directorate General for Energy of the EU took part in the conference. Mr. Antoni Peshev, Chairman of the Assembly of the Economic Chamber of Macedonia and Mr. Aleksandar Dukovski, Director of the Energy Agency of the Republic of Macedonia, presided over the panel discussion on "Data Management for Energy Savings in the EU and the SEE Region” that rounded off the conference.