Energy is important for achieving the individual Millennium Development Goals. The availability of modern energy services not only improves the efficiency of basic household services such as cooking, heating and lighting, but it also creates opportunities such as income generation, education and medical services.
One of the main challenges and opportunities for the Asian and Pacific region is to continue to provide and expand access to equitable energy services to support economic growth and poverty eradication in a manner that reinforces the long-term prosperity, environmental sustainability and opportunity.
The Seminar on Policy Options for the Expansion of Community-Driven Energy Service Provision was held on 11 and 12 March to discuss the policy aspects of rural renewable energy in various countries. This meeting was held in association with the International Conference on New Villages with Renewable Energy to add value to both of these meetings by enhancing the international perspective. The conference was organized by the China Association of Rural Energy Industry, and supported by the China Ministry of Agriculture and the Embassy of the Netherlands in Beijing.
The Policy Options for the Expansion of Community-Driven Energy Service Provision Seminar analyzed the experiences of various countries in creating an enabling environment to encourage private-sector and community participation. The Seminar was attended by representatives from the Governments of Bangladesh, Loa People's Democratic Republic, Nepal, the Philippines and Sri Lanka. Also present were experts from rural renewable energy organizations from China, India, Indonesia and the Netherlands Development Organization (SNV).