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Ministers to prepare for the UN High-level Dialogue on Energy in thematic forums – Lintilä to take part in Innovation, Technology and Data forum on 22 June

Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment
Publication date 21.6.2021 15.56
Press release
Kuvassa ministeri Mika Lintilä

In connection with its General Assembly, the UN will organise a High-level Dialogue on Energy in New York in September. This is the first time since 1981 that the UN addresses energy issue at this level. The aim of the meeting is to strengthen Member States’ efforts to achieve the Paris Climate Agreement and the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) on energy in preparation for the COP26 Climate Change Conference in Glasgow in November.

Ahead of the meeting in September, five thematic ministerial forums will be held virtually on 21–25 June. Finland will participate in the forum on Innovation, Technology and Data on 22 June and act as one of its co-chairs. Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintilä will represent Finland as a Global Champion and facilitate the discussion. 

“The UN’s High-level Dialogue on Energy is a unique forum that will speed up global climate action. In Finland, as elsewhere, economic recovery is an opportunity to invest in clean energy solutions and the digital economy. I hope that Finland can show an example and inspire the rest of the world to make ambitious and rapid changes to the energy sector, where reductions in emissions can be significant,” Lintilä says.

The four other forums focus on energy access (21 June), energy transition (23 June), enabling SDGs through inclusive and just energy transitions (24 June) and finance and investment (25 June). A report will be published on each forum including recommendations for concrete actions and for discussion at the High-level Dialogue in September. The UN will use these thematic reports to create a roadmap to achieve a transition in the energy sector. 

The forums are inclusive and will bring together ministers and leading experts from the Member States as well as representatives of various stakeholders, such as businesses, civil society and young people, to share experiences and discuss the possibilities of speeding up the implementation of SDG7 and the Paris Climate Change Agreement in the 2020s. The SDG7 aims to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.

Finland to co-chair the forum on Innovation, Technology and Data

The Innovation, Technology and Data forum focuses on promoting energy access and transition and on meeting the SDGs through development work and applications related to knowledge, technology, innovation and research. 

“I am pleased that innovation, technology and data are one of the dialogue’s five themes. We need local and clean innovative technology solutions to achieve equal access to clean energy around the world. These solutions can also support other SDGs and create new business opportunities,” Lintilä says.

“Long-term decision-making and a stable regulatory environment are also important for all stakeholders in promoting the transition towards climate neutrality. In the energy sector, political decisions can have an impact for decades to come and investment decisions are made in the long term,” Lintilä adds.

The ministerial segment of the forum will be held on Tuesday, 22 June at 16.00–18.00. In addition to Finland, Mauritius and Morocco will give opening speeches at the ministerial segment. 

Besides Lintilä and officials from the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, several Finnish speakers will participate in the forum. Business Finland, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, Outokumpu, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Fingrid will address the participants of the forum. Karoliina Loikkanen, Head of Sustainability at Nokia, will take part in the leadership conversation on energy transition.   

The forum was prepared by technical expert working groups, including VTT, which participated in the preparation of the forum for Innovation, Technology and Data. 

The forum’s side events (to be held at 15–16 and 17.30–02.00 Finnish time) will focus on sharing innovations, best practices and experiences. The dialogue also includes the possibility for those involved to launch new voluntary energy commitments (Energy Compacts).

In May 2021, Finland was selected as one of the Global Champions to help prepare the UN’s High-level Dialogue on Energy in September. The main task of the Champions is to lead the international influencing work on their own theme and to work together with other Champions to host the ministerial meeting. 

“Finland applied to host the Innovation, Technology and Data forum at the request of the European Commission, because we have a reputation as a leader in clean energy transition and the low-carbon economy. We also have a lot to offer in the discussion on the promotion of innovation and clean technology,” Minister Lintilä said in the spring.

Teppo Säkkinen, Special Adviser to the Minister of Economic Affairs, tel. +358 50 516 2868 
Nina Alatalo, Adviser to the Minister of Economic Affairs (EU and international affairs), tel. +358 29 504 7171
Katja Tuokko, Senior Specialist, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 29 504 7660 Anu Hassinen, Senior Adviser on Development Policy, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, tel. +358 50 442 0536

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