ATHENS — The latest developments in the sector of energy policy, the climate crisis and investment prospects in Greece were the focus of an online meeting of the US-Greece Strategic Dialogue 'Energy' group.
The US delegation was led by the US Ambassador in Athens Geoffrey Pyatt and the US State Department's Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of Energy Resources Ambassador Virginia E. Palmer. The Greek side was represented by General Secretary for Energy and Mineral Raw Materials Alexandra Sdoukou, of the environment and energy ministry, as well as the General Secretary for International Economic Relations and Openness Yiannis Smyrlis from the foreign ministry, which is coordinating the broader strategic dialogue with the United States.
The discussion focused on the Greek government's energy initiatives, issues relating to the climate crisis response and promoting green energy, where the two sides acknowledged that their policies converged.
The US side outlined the new direction of policy on energy and climate under the Biden-Harris administration, including the return of the US to the Paris Agreement and action on a global level.
Sdoukou presented Greek policies for the energy transition and the measures already taken and planned by the Greek government to boost investments in energy, with emphasis on new technologies, such as wind farms, energy storage and hydrogen.
She also referred to Greece's intention to update the National Plan for Energy and Climate to comply with the new and more ambitious European targets in this area.
The meeting touched on Greece's role as a regional hub for the diversification of energy sources and supply routes, through projects such as the TAP pipeline, the natural gas interconnection pipelines with Bulgaria and North Macedonia, the FSRU Alexandropoulis, the underground gas storage facility in Kavala and the Eastmed pipeline. Among others, it highlighted important steps to expand interconnections with neighbouring countries, especially Bulgaria and Italy, as well as the EuroAsia Interconnector power cable linking Crete, Cyprus and Israel.
The US side noted the importance of the above initiatives and acknowledged that Greece is proceeding on the basis of a strategic plan to enhance its regional role, while expressing particular interest in privatisations in energy and of the Alexandropoulis port. They emphasised the important role that the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) can play in Greece and the surrounding region with respect to green energy projects.