Renewable energy in South-East Asia (ASEAN-RESP)
Title: Renewable Energy Support Programme for ASEAN (ASEAN-RESP)
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Countries: ASEAN member states
Lead executing agency: ASEAN Centre for Energy (ACE)
Overall term: 2013 to 2016
The ASEAN member states’ rapid and dynamic economic growth requires environmentally friendly, efficient energy solutions in order to be sustainable. Renewable energy is therefore among the region’s growing sectors. Overall, ASEAN member states are making efforts to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels and ensure a more environmentally friendly and sustainable energy supply.
With the ASEAN Plan of Action for Energy Cooperation 2010-2015, ASEAN has set the goal of significantly increasing the use of renewable energy in the region. The different starting points of individual countries in terms of natural conditions (i.e. solar, wind, water, biomass and geothermal resources) and the political and regulatory framework, however, make it difficult to establish a uniform energy policy and renewable energy strategy.
The relevant actors in the ASEAN region (ministries, energy suppliers and the private sector) share expertise and policies in order to improve framework conditions for renewable energy.
At a strategic level, the project is aiming on the one hand to encourage cooperation within the ASEAN region and on the other hand to support national processes in the 10 member states. It is making specialist expertise available to critically examine the national frameworks for renewable energy and develop approaches to improve these frameworks.
The project is encouraging the ASEAN member states to share expertise and experiences with one another and brings in international experiences. Methodologies include dialogue, communication and learning instruments. An important focus is on linking regional measures with other technical cooperation projects in member states (e.g. Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand and Viet Nam).
The project draws on and analyses experiences and exemplary procedures adopted in individual member states and then discusses these at regional level. Individual countries’ needs for consultancy are identified and built into the project. Background papers are produced, workshops are run and outputs (such as guidelines) are made available to experts and managers across the region, particularly via the project’s information platforms.
Following dialogue at regional level, recommendations on matters such as new support guidelines, technical standards or energy pricing are presented to ASEAN’s Specialized Bodies on Energy (meetings of secretaries of state and ministers) for discussion.
Focus groups have been introduced as a new regional cooperation instrument in the area of renewable energy. These give representatives from civil society and the private sector the opportunity to participate in the regional decision-makers. Bringing these actors together ensures that their expertise and experiences are taken into account when developing regional recommendations.
A guideline on how to assess the technical risks of solar projects was produced and distributed to banks and investors. Employees of local banks and other financiers are enabled to carry out a sound evaluation of the technical risks of project proposals. The financial sector will thereby increasingly have the confidence to invest in solar projects and expand its involvement in the sector in the medium term.
The ‘ASEAN Renewable Energy Guidelines’ developed by the project are an innovative way to improve the implementation of renewable energy support mechanisms. The guidelines systematically cover the administrative processes involved in carrying out renewable energy projects in ASEAN member states, setting these out in a transparent and user-friendly way. To date, corresponding guidelines have been produced for bioenergy projects in Indonesia and solar projects in the Philippines, where they have been adopted as reference documents by the respective governments.
An online portal offers comprehensive and up-to-date information on the development of renewable energy in ASEAN member states. It includes an extensive collection of publications and a directory of companies offering technology or services in the renewable energy sector. With up to 1,200 users every month, the portal has already established itself as an important source of information.