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New research centre to monitor EU energy policy, security

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Prague, Sept 5 (CTK) – The issues of the EU energy policy and security will be on the agenda of the new Centre for Energy Policy (CEP) in Prague, which International Relations Institute head Petr Kratochvil and Prague’s special ambassador for energy security Vaclav Bartuska officially opened on Tuesday.

Bartuska said he expects the centre to help highlight the consequences the EU energy policy has on security and stability in other world regions.

“We primarily focus on the energy policy pursued by the EU and its relations with current suppliers, producers and partners,” CEP coordinator Lukas Tichy said.

Another task of the team, whose members focus on five different regions, is to seek problems that slow down the development of cooperation in the energy field.

Bartuska said energy policy will be a significant issue on the international agenda in the future, mainly as a result of the advanced world’s tendency to abandon carbon sources.

He said many countries rely on oil and gas trade as an important part of their economy.

“These countries are asking what will happen after the [advanced countries’ carbon-free] plan starts to be implemented,” Bartuska said, mentioning Nigeria, Venezuela and Saudi Arabia as examples of such countries.

“I expect the new centre’s operation to contribute to the understanding of what consequences our steps may have for the rest of the world,” he said.

The centre will also focus on the use or misuse of energy sources by terrorist organisations.

Before the centre’s opening on Tuesday, a book entitled Terrorism and Energy was presented by its authors, who describe the strategy of various militant and terrorist groups in the Middle East and North Africa. Based on an analysis, they write that energy has been used to deter and blackmail, and that attacks on the energy sector straight in Europe cannot be ruled out in the future.

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