Ref. Ares(2017)1216894 - 08/03/2017
Commissioner Carlos Moedas
Meeting with Members of the European Round Table of
RTD-G1, CDMA 03/
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0. KEY MESSAGE
1. STEERING BRIEF
1.1 Scene setter
1.3 Line to take
2. SPEAKING POINTS
3. BACKGROUND INFORMATION
3.1. An Energy Union for Research, Innovation and Competitiveness
The Energy Union is a European policy area where very close cooperation
between EU, Member States and Industries is essential to deliver on
shared objectives towards accelerating the decarbonisation of EU’s
economy while seizing the business opportunities that such major
The Energy Union Research, Innovation and Competitiveness Strategy
which is planned for early November 2016 will propose a set of concrete
measures combining innovation and competitiveness to assist in
implementing the Energy Union’s objectives and looking forward on
ERT’s position paper is an important input to this policy process. A
continued dialogue is essential with EU policy makers to pass key
messages and to give an opportunity to hear the voice of the most
1. STEERING BRIEF
1.1 Scene setter
The Energy Union Research, Innovation and Competitiveness Strategy (EURICS) is planned
for adoption by the College on 9 November 2016 ( a date which corresponds to the beginning
of the 22nd Conference of the Parties (COP22) to be held in Morocco).
EURICS will contain a set of actions in a few key areas aiming at contributing to the
acceleration of EU’s economy decarbonisation while favouring our competitiveness in the
growing global market of low-carbon technologies. Likely focus areas may be energy
storage, mobility in urban areas, energy efficiency in buildings and investing in the next
generation of renewable technologies. Such areas will be discussed between College
Members on 13 September in a dedicated Project Team Meeting.
Industrialists are aware that EURICS is being developed. Some industries participated to the
public consultation which ended late May 2016 and industries will be represented in a
dedicated high-level stakeholders event scheduled on 26 September 2016 in the Commission
Pass the message that ERT’s voice has been well received and that success in implementing
some of the suggestions will critically depend on the joint capacity of industrialist and public
authorities to trigger investments in innovative solutions across the EU. Concentrating these
investments on focused targets will help EU's ambitions to develop and strengthen its
1.3 Line to take
Inform the ERT on the state of play with regard to EURICS
Stress that the core issue for seizing the opportunities created by EU’s decarbonisation
objectives is the increase of investments into innovative activities.
Remind that increasing investments in riskier activities will occur only if both public
and private investors team-up towards joint objectives.
2. SPEAKING POINTS
ERT’s position paper is an important input to the EU policy process.
With regard to the Energy Union and in particular the Energy Union
Research, Innovation and Competitiveness Strategy (EURICS) due this
fall, I see several areas where most of ERT’s recommendations on
entrepreneurship would apply : (1) the completion of the EU single
market, (2) innovation-friendly data regulations, (3) reducing regulatory
bottlenecks to innovation (4) tax incentives for start-ups (5) focused
public funding where needed and (6) facilitating the participation of start-
ups to public procurements.
EURICS is precisely about joining forces with industry towards
accelerating the decarbonisation of EU’s economy while seizing the
economic opportunities that this massive transformation of our society
The start-up initiatives of ERT members companies in several sectors
covered by the Energy Union (energy, mobility and industry) are very
encouraging. ERT companies have invested more than one billion EUR in
recent years on start-ups. EU public authorities also supported many
companies (small and large) in their R&I activities and to get closer to the
market. Can we share our experience on this and see concretely where
major bottlenecks to innovation appear?
The reflection on EURICS reminded us that companies and, mutatis
mutandis, public authorities which have been successful in their
investments most often based their success on their capacity to innovate,
i.e. using current knowledge differently and link areas that businesses so
far dealt with as separated sectors.
In this context, the role of IT in providing integrated solutions which are
based on a systemic reflection and towards the provision of energy or
transport services rather than only goods is instrumental.
For instance, I would like to hear more from you on Air Liquide’s i-lab
initiative and whether EU public authorities are called upon to further
stimulate such promising efforts.
Among the policy recommendations provided by the ERT, several address
issues which are under the Member States’ competence. The Commission
has a permanent dialogue with the Member States on taxation and
incentive policies relevant to the implementation of the Energy Union.
However, in order not to lose time in EU’s well known governance
complexity, my message would be that ERT adresses to the Member
States the same messages as those provided to the EU level. If consistent
messages, notably on the reinforcement of the EU dimension are
conveyed, every actor whether local, regional, national or European could
then address the issues which are in its competence and act towards a
single and common goal in support to industrial activity in Europe.
A continued dialogue between ERT and EU policy makers is essential to
pass key messages as well as for hearing the voice of the most innovative
As the design of EURICS aims at monitoring closely the impact of policy
actions, I invite you to discuss the progress made in implementing the
actions on an annual basis, to possibly feed into the annual report on the
State of the Energy Union.
I am keen to discuss such report as it should detail what the European
Commission managed concretely to do and not only what it intends to do.
3. BACKGROUND INFORMATION
3.1 An Energy Union for Research, Innovation and Competitiveness
The Commission communication on a "Framework Strategy for a Resilient Energy Union
with a Forward-Looking Climate Change Policy" adopted in February 2015, has five
mutually-reinforcing and closely interrelated dimensions designed to bring about greater
energy security, sustainability and competitiveness.
It calls for a new strategy for Research and Innovation (R&I), as its fifth dimension, to be at
the very heart of the Energy Union, supporting breakthroughs in low-carbon technologies by
coordinating research and helping to finance projects in partnership with the private sector.
The roadmap associated to the Energy Union communication calls under the following action
14 for the "EU to develop a forward-looking, energy and climate-related R&I strategy to
maintain European technological leadership and expand export opportunities.
The Commission will propose a European energy R&I approach, comprising an
upgraded Strategic Energy Technology Plan [SET-Plan] and a strategic transport R&I
agenda [STRIA], with a limited number of essential priorities and clear objectives, in
The Commission will develop an initiative on global technology and innovation
leadership on energy and climate to boost jobs and growth."
As a follow up, the new Integrated SET-Plan Communication, adopted on 15 September, lays
out some key priorities for a new Energy R&I Strategy for the EU in the coming years. It
provides the overall framework for promoting strengthened cooperation in R&I between the
EU, Member States and stakeholders (research and industry), in order to step up the efforts to
bring new, efficient and cost-competitive low-carbon technologies faster to the market and
deliver the energy transition in a cost-competitive way.
In particular, the Integrated SET-Plan:
Identifies 10 actions for research and innovation, based on an assessment of the
energy system needs and on their importance for the energy system transformation
and the potential to create growth and jobs in the EU;
Addresses for these actions the whole innovation chain, from basic research to
market uptake, both in terms of financing as well as in terms of regulatory
Adapts the structures set up under the SET-Plan to ensure a more effective
interaction with Member States and stakeholders;
Proposes to measure progress as part of the annual reporting of the State of the
Energy Union via overall Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s), such as the level of
investment in R&I, as well as specific KPI’s to measure progress on the performance
and cost-reduction for the priorities.
The 10 actions are as follows:
Sustain technological leadership by developing highly performant renewable
technologies and their integration in the EU’s energy system;
Reduce the cost of key technologies;
Create technologies and services for smart homes that provide smart solutions to
Increase the resilience, security and smartness of the energy system;
Develop new materials and technologies for, and the market uptake of, energy
efficiency solutions for buildings;
Continue efforts to make EU industry less energy intensive and more competitive;
Become competitive in the global battery sector to drive e-mobility forward;
Strengthen market take-up of renewable fuels needed for sustainable transport
Step up research and innovation activities on the application of carbon capture and
storage (CCS) and the commercial viability of carbon capture and use (CCU);
Maintaining a high level of safety of nuclear reactors and associated fuel cycles during
operation and decommissioning, while improving their efficiency.
Regarding the integrated strategy for Research and Innovation, internal discussions between
all the Commission services involved have progressed in the past months and an Initiative
Roadmap for the above-mentioned Integrated Strategy has been developed. Discussions at the
level of an Inter-Service Group are ongoing and results will be brought forward to the
different Cabinets for political endorsement in the next weeks.
A public consultation process has been carried out and its results will feed into the integrated
R & I strategy