The Slovak Atlantic Commission (SAC) organised a workshop on Energy as a part of the “Supporting Economic Reforms in Ukraine by Transferring V4 Experience” conference that took place at the Pesti Vigadó and the Corvinus University in Budapest on 10-11 December, 2015.

The conference was organised by the Institute for Foreign Affairs and Trade in cooperation with the Slovak Atlantic Commission, Europeum, the Lublin University of Technology, Centre for Euro-Atlantic Integration and Democracy and supported by Visegrad Fund. The main aim of the conference was to disseminate the know-how and experience of the V4 (Visegrád four) countries with European integration as well as share V4 experience of similar industrial and agricultural reforms that Ukraine will have to tackle and implement in the following years.

The first day of the conference consisted of four panels that focused on the economic reforms from a more general perspective and introduced current problems Ukraine is facing. The first panel was dedicated to the discussions on privatization and foreign direct investment on Ukraine and was followed by the second debate on the unorthodox reforms and crisis management in the V4 countries. Next, the panellists and other participants discussed the reforms and their role in improving competitiveness in Central and Eastern Europe. The last panel was dedicated to the debates about small and medium sized enterprises and their role as important elements in the economic recovery of Ukraine.

On the second day, V4 and Ukraine experts shared the national experience at four thematic workshops, namely energy, agriculture, IT and car industry. The SAC organised the workshop on energy which was attended by more than 25 experts, professors, energy analysts and representatives of private companies. The workshop brought up issues such as energy security and necessity to continue improving Europe’s energy effectiveness. Furthermore, the participants discussed the importance of renewable sources due to the fact that Ukraine´s energy production capabilities have decreased by 17% since the beginning of 2015. This decrease was mostly caused by the fact that several power plants are stationed in Eastern Ukraine and Crimea, among them Ukraine´s biggest solar power plant. Due to this loss, the amount of energy Ukraine produces from renewable resources, has also decreased. Moreover, the participants did not neglect the topic of nuclear power as the majority of Ukrainian’s energy comes from nuclear plants. Finally, the panellists have also foreseen the increasing role of biofuel in diversifying Ukraine’s energy sector.

The fruitful discussion ended with conclusion that the V4 countries similarly to Ukraine need to improve their energy security and efficiency. In case of Ukraine there is definitely a need for new technologies in order to improve its energetic sector. The V4 countries can play a major role in sharing their know-how as well as their technology from the energy sector in order to help Ukraine decrease its dependence on Russia. The final policy paper together with recommendations on energy efficiency and energy security of the V4 countries and Ukraine will be presented during the press conference in February/March 2016 in Kiev.