German-Chinese Energy Partnership

Project description

Title: German-Chinese Energy Partnership (Phase 3)
Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi)
Country: People's Republic of China
Partners: National Development and Reform Commission of the People’s Republic of China (NDRC) and National Energy Administration of the People’s Republic of China (NEA)
Overall term: 2013 to 2014


In view of Germany's high degree of dependence on energy imports, in recent years the German Government has entered into a number of bilateral energy partnerships (EPs) with countries that are important in terms of energy production, transit or consumption. These partnerships are being coordinated by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi). By establishing strong relationships based on trust, BMWi is helping to secure Germany's energy supply. There are three goals behind Germany's energy policy: to ensure security of supply, protect the environment/mitigate the effects of climate change, and achieve economic efficiency. These goals are being pursued through the means of strategic cooperation with partner countries.

Energy-policy cooperation between BMWi and the National Development and Reform Commission of the People's Republic of China (NDRC) was initiated in 2006 at the Sino-German Forum for Economic and Technological Cooperation. In early 2013 both parties signed two joint agreements, making a particular commitment to step up cooperation in the area of energy conservation and efficiency, as well as in the field of renewable energies.


Bilateral cooperation between China and Germany in the energy sector is enhanced and has developed into a strategic partnership, thereby improving the security of energy supply in both countries and helping to mitigate the effects of climate change internationally. German enterprises can access the Chinese market more easily.


The cooperation structure of the project links together the three levels of action of a high-profile government dialogue, corporate partnerships, and practical reference and pilot projects. Those value chain and energy sector issues relevant to the two countries provide the thematic framework for the project.

The bilateral government dialogues serve as platforms that encourage actors and institutions from civil society and the private, research and higher-education sectors to engage in exchange, thereby giving them an opportunity to provide substantive input. Private-sector interests are pooled within the energy partnership in order to develop cross-company approaches to solving existing market-access problems and overcoming investment barriers.

Two thematic working groups have been established under the bilateral agreements:

  1. Energy (focusing on renewable energies, smart grids and storage technologies), headed by BMWi in Germany and by the National Energy Administration (NEA) on the Chinese side.
  2. Energy efficiency, headed by BMWi in Germany and the NDRC in China.

BMWi is responsible for the overall coordination of the partnership in Germany, while the NDRC is responsible on the Chinese side. Organisational and subject-specific support is provided by a secretariat consisting of a team with contact persons in Beijing and Berlin. The secretariat is managed by GIZ and, as part of the energy partnership, serves as a point of contact and an information platform for all stakeholders and interested parties in the bilateral cooperation. It also assists in the preparation and follow-up work for meetings of the relevant bodies and with the organisation of thematic workshops. The secretariat is in frequent contact with business organisations and other relevant institutions in Beijing and Berlin.

Further stakeholders in Germany include the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB), the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), and the Federal Foreign Office. Within China the partners are the NDRC, the NEA and the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development (MOHURD).

China © GIZ