Mar 3, 2024, 11:46 PM

GECF final declaration condemns unilateral economic sanctions

GECF final declaration condemns unilateral economic sanctions

TEHRAN, Mar. 03 (MNA) – Gas exporting countries forum members condemned unilateral economic sanctions in their final declaration they issued after their meeting in Algiers, the capital city of Algeria on Sunday.

The 7th Summit of Heads of State and Government of the Member Countries of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF) convened in Algiers, the capital city of Algeria, on 2nd March. During the Summit, the leaders approved the Algiers Declaration in the spirit of solidarity and cooperation.

The Forum was established in 2001 and includes 12 permanent members, in addition to observer members. It is expected to record strong growth in demand for gas in 2024 compared to the previous year, supported by expectations of lower temperatures and lower prices, according to the latest report issued by the International Energy Agency.

Algiers Declaration expressed the leaders' resolve to “promote natural gas as an abundant, affordable, flexible and reliable energy source, and harness and develop more environmentally-friendly, efficient and sustainable natural gas technologies”.

The full text of the declarations is as follows:

We, the heads of state and government of member countries of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum (GECF), upon the invitation of His Excellency Mr Abdelmadjid Tebboune, the President of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria, gathered in the historic city of Algiers on the 2nd day of March 2024 for the 7th GECF Summit, in the spirit of solidarity and cooperation,

i) Recalling:

The Declarations of the GECF Summits held in Doha, the State of Qatar, in 2011; Moscow, the Russian Federation, in 2013; Tehran, Islamic Republic of Iran, in 2015; Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Plurinational State of Bolivia, in 2017; Malabo, Republic of Equatorial Guinea, in 2019; and Doha, the State of Qatar, in 2022;

ii) Reaffirming:

a. The absolute and permanent sovereign rights of member countries over their natural gas resources;

b. Our commitment to the GECF objectives and our determination to strengthen the forum’s role while emphasising its contribution to global energy security, equity and sustainability;

c. Our endeavour to efficiently manage and encourage the utilisation of the natural gas resources of member countries, aiming to promote sustainable development that benefits both producers and consumers;

d. The importance of cooperation and coordination among member countries for the development of research, innovation, knowledge and technology transfer related to natural gas, as well as for the sharing of best practices and promoting capacity building; and

e. Our support for robust and meaningful dialogue among producers, consumers, and other relevant stakeholders, with a view to ensure the security of both demand and supply, foster market stability, and advocate for open, transparent, unhindered and non-discriminatory natural gas markets.

iii) Acknowledging:

a. The fundamental role of natural gas in achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, satisfying rising global energy needs, and securing universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all;

b. The contributions of eco-friendly natural gas in addressing climate change challenges, and its importance in achieving just, equitable, orderly, inclusive and sustainable energy transitions, while taking into account national circumstances, capabilities and priorities, and that economic growth, social progress and environmental protection are the three intertwined and mutually-supportive pillars of sustainable development;

c. The risks and challenges to the natural gas market derived from the geopolitical and economic situation, especially in terms of physical flows, market functioning, contractual arrangements, flow of sustainable investments and the integrity of critical natural gas infrastructure;

d. The paramount importance of security of natural gas demand, transparent non-discriminatory legal and regulatory frameworks and predictable energy, trade, fiscal, and environmental policies in natural-gas-importing and -transit countries;

e. The need to adopt innovation-led practices and scientifically-guided research to enhance the significant role of natural gas in improving energy access and reducing energy poverty;

f. The important role of natural gas in the value chain of the petrochemical and chemical industry in general, with a wide range of key end markets to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, including the production of fertilisers to ensure global food security and eradicate hunger; and

g. The crucial need for security of demand and security of supply, and for open and transparent international collaboration to protect critical natural gas infrastructure and enhance resilience to natural disasters, technological incidents and man-made threats, including, but not limited to, malicious use of information and communication technologies.

iv) Reiterating:

a. Our support for all countries in their relentless fight against energy poverty and in their endeavours to bring prosperity to their people, as well as in the exercise of their fundamental rights to develop their energy resources;

b. Our condemnation of all unilateral economic restrictions undertaken without the prior approval of the United Nations Security Council, and any extraterritorial application of national laws and regulations against GECF member countries that negatively impact the development and trade of natural gas and jeopardise the security of natural gas supply;

c. Our concern on the recurring volatility in natural gas demand that adversely affects global economic performance, and our determination to work with all parties to achieve balanced and reliable natural gas markets; and

d. The importance of medium and long-term natural gas contracts, equitable and stable natural gas prices, and sustained investments in natural gas for enhancing energy security and supporting the development of resilient energy systems.

v) Expressing:

a. Our determination to strengthen our collaboration with a view to maintain the reliability and resilience of natural gas systems, provide efficient and reliable natural gas supplies, and expand the use of natural gas for sustainable development and climate change mitigation and adaptation;

b. Our call for timely investment for market stability and unhindered flow of financial resources, access to technology, and knowledge transfer in a non-discriminatory manner;

c. Our warm welcome of the signing of the Agreement on the GECF Gas Research Institute Headquarters, based in Algiers;

d. Our determination to promote innovative technologies for natural gas and connected industries, through the Gas Research Institute, for the benefit of GECF member countries;

e. Our rejection of any use of climate change as justification to implement measures that hinder investments in natural gas projects and create any means of arbitrary discrimination or disguised restriction in direct contravention of international trade rules;

f. Our strong support for African countries in their aspirations and commendable endeavours to tackle energy poverty, address the challenges related to energy access and foster sustainable, equitable and inclusive socio-economic development while protecting the environment, in line with the United Nations 2030 Development Agenda and the African Union’s Agenda 2063;

g. Our rejection of any artificial interventions in natural gas markets, including attempts to alter the price discovery and risk management functions of markets, as well as the imposition of politically-driven price caps, which can only aggravate market tightness and discourage investments required to satisfy growing global energy demand; and

h. Our disapproval of the unilateral implementation of unprecedented actions and taxation measures, which are supposedly justified by ensuring security of energy supply for some, at the expenses of the natural gas market rules, and with the risk of accentuating imbalances to the detriment of people in vulnerable situations.

Resolve our common determination to:

1. Promote natural gas as an abundant, affordable, flexible and reliable energy source, and harness and develop more environmentally-friendly, efficient and sustainable natural gas technologies;

2. Advocate for the wider utilisation of natural gas in domestic and international markets, especially as a strategic measure to tackle energy poverty and pursue United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. This includes championing natural gas as a pivotal source of energy for a just, inclusive and prosperous future, ensuring that no one is left behind;

3. Contribute to the inclusion of natural gas as an environmentally sustainable natural resource in climate, investment and fiscal regulations, international banking and global trade;

4. Foster the increased use of natural gas in maritime and land transportation, and develop necessary infrastructure to provide it efficiently and cost-effectively to all consumers;

5. Support the fundamental role of long-term natural gas contracts, as well as gas pricing based on oil/oil-products indexation, to ensure steady investments in the development of natural gas resources;

6. Strengthen the GECF's positioning by increasing its international visibility, attracting new members, encouraging partnerships, facilitating dialogue between producers and consumers, and broadening cooperation with relevant international organisations and entities;

7. Support the further development of the GECF’s expertise and mechanisms for joint undertakings, in order to harness the role of the GECF as a leading platform for dialogue and cooperation on natural gas matters;

8. Take advantage of the GECF’s Gas Research Institute to expand cooperation in, inter alia, natural gas technologies, scientifically-guided research, and innovation led capacity-building; and

9. Stress the crucial importance of safeguarding natural gas critical infrastructure, including cross-border infrastructure, to ensure its reliability and resilience, as well as strengthening international cooperation in risks reduction, prevention and protection from natural disasters, technological mishaps and man-made threats, including deliberate attacks and malicious use of information and communication technologies, as appropriate.

The heads of state and government welcomed the accession of the Republic of Mozambique, the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, and the Republic of Senegal to the forum, reaffirming the GECF’s collective pursuit of fostering energy cooperation and dialogue.

The heads of state and government of the member countries of the Gas Exporting Countries Forum extend their appreciation to His Excellency Mr Abdelmadjid Tebboune, the President of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria, for his excellent leadership of the 7th GECF Summit, as well as to the government and the people of the People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria for their warm hospitality and excellent arrangements.

News ID 212606


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