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Memorandum of Understanding between the Department of Natural Resources of Canada and the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy of the Federal Republic of Germany on the establishment of an energy partnership

The Department of Natural Resources of Canada and the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy of the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany hereinafter referred to as the "Participants",

  • Commit to each achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 and to implement the Paris Agreement on Climate Change to which both Canada and Germany are Parties;
  • Consider the strategic role of the energy sector in attaining these goals;
  • Commit to an ambitious energy transition;
  • Recognize that cooperation in transitioning to safe, secure, reliable, affordable, and sustainable energy not only delivers mutual benefits but is also required for the sustainable prosperity of the international community under the new climate regime;
  • Express a desire to strengthen their comprehensive bilateral partnership for the economic development and prosperity of both Canada and Germany; and
  • Intend to enhance their bilateral dialogue and practical cooperation on the energy transition.

Have come to the following understanding:

1. Objective

The objective of this Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is to provide a general framework for the Participants to cooperate in the energy sector, using synergies between existing bilateral and multilateral dialogues on energy and climate issues to accelerate the transition to a safe, secure, reliable, affordable, and sustainable energy system in both Canada and Germany through people-to-people exchanges on best practices and knowledge, encouraging trade and investment, as well as joint research, development, and demonstration under the principles of mutual benefits, equality, and reciprocity.

The Participants underline the importance of the involvement of the private sector as a driver of the energy transition. The energy partnership therefore also aims to promote business-to-business exchanges between Canada and Germany.

2. Areas of Cooperation

a) The Participants will foster the energy transition through exchanges on policy, best practices, and technologies as well as through cooperative activities and projects focused on the following areas:

  1. Energy policy, planning, and regulations
    By sharing approaches to energy policy, analysis and planning, and cooperation within international fora, to promote energy policies and best practices and align perspectives on energy issues, such as attracting investments in the energy sector, to enable a just and inclusive transition to net-zero economies.
  2. Resilient electricity systems that can integrate high shares of renewables
    By supporting the development of clean, reliable, affordable, flexible, and resilient electricity systems, and foster uptake of renewable energy to transition towards a low carbon energy system.
  3. Energy efficiency
    By supporting uptake of energy efficiency solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition to a low carbon economy, while improving competitiveness, employment and market access.
  4. Sector coupling and low carbon fuels
    By fostering exchanges on transitioning from today’s energy mix to tomorrow’s low carbon fuels and increasing the usage of renewable energy in sectors such as transport, heating and industry (so called “sector coupling”). To collaborate on clean hydrogen, its derivatives and potential applications, and identify potential cooperation projects on the production, usage and trade of clean hydrogen. 
  5. Innovation and applied research
    By facilitating innovation, applied research, and development to deliver clean energy solutions for tomorrow.

b) Under each of these areas of cooperation, the Participants may carry out the following cooperative activities:

  • Mutual exchange of information between ministries at the working level;
  • Workshops;
  • Joint participation / leadership in multilateral fora and initiatives (such as CEM, MI, IEA, and IRENA);
  • Joint bilateral conferences (i.e. Canada-Germany Energy Days);
  • Joint studies / policy papers;
  • Delegation visits / study trips to the respective partner country;
  • Joint communications initiatives;
  • Policy coordination, especially in multilateral fora;
  • Participation of high-level officials at major international events held by the Participants;
  • Encouragement of private sector trade and investment;
  • Identification and promotion of joint pilot / demonstration projects of the private sector; and 
  • Involvement of non-governmental institutions, the private sector, and research institutions in activities of the energy partnership.

The Participants may, on a jointly decided basis, decide on further areas of cooperation or activities within the scope of this MOU.

The Participants will involve and consult broadly with the respective Ministries/Departments for the Environment and other relevant Ministries/Departments and agencies as necessary and as they jointly decide upon.

3. Implementation and Governance

a) The Participants will establish a High-Level Steering Committee (the "Committee"), which will meet annually, or within such intervals as required, at the level of Deputy Minister. 

b) The Participants understand that the Committee will be in charge of the application and monitoring of this MOU.

c) The Participants will jointly decide upon the agenda, time, and place of all meetings, which will be held alternately in Canada and Germany. The Participants understand that:

  • when possible, the Committee meetings will be aligned with other events or meetings where relevant officials and/or industry stakeholders will be in attendance;
  • the Committee meetings will be chaired by the host Participant;
  • the minutes of the meetings will be approved and signed by their representatives.

d) The Participants understand that the Committee will:

  • serve as a forum to discuss energy-related issues, consult on the means of cooperation, and evaluate and improve upon the results of their cooperation;
  • be mandated to establish working groups, if necessary, to develop cooperation in specific areas. The working groups will identify, plan, and coordinate their activities and review progress on the implementation, for exchanging in-depth on the areas of cooperation. The Participants will nominate relevant stakeholders or representatives to participate in the working groups. The working groups will be jointly co-chaired by one representative of each Participant and are expected to meet such that they can report on their work to the Committee.

e) The Participants will pay for the expenses of their representatives attending Committee meetings, meetings of working groups, and meetings of cooperative activities, or projects under this MOU.

f) Each Participant will pay the expenses incurred in carrying out its role in cooperative activities and projects asides from meetings.

g) The Participants understand that their cooperative activities and projects under this MOU are subject to the availability of their respective resources.

h) The Participants will cooperate and carry out their activities and projects under this MOU in accordance with their respective national law.

4. Intellectual Property

When the Participants intend to carry out an activity or project that may generate intellectual property, they will conclude a contract that will set forth the timing, scope of the specific activity and deliverables, as well as the intellectual property rights.

5. Differences in interpretation and implementation

The Participants will resolve any difference in the interpretation or implementation of this MOU amicably through consultations.

6. Status

This MOU is not legally binding.

8. Final dispositions

a) This MOU will come into effect on the day of its last signature by the Participants.

b) The Participants may amend this MOU upon their mutual written consent. 

c) Either Participant may terminate this MOU by giving a six (6) months written notice to the other Participant.

Signed in duplicate virtually at St. John’s, this 16th day of March, 2021, and at Berlin, this 16th day of March, 2021, in the English and French languages, each version being equally valid.

For the Department of Natural Resources of Canada

For the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy of the Federal Republic of Germany

Seamus O’Regan Jr.

Minister of Natural Resources in the Government of Canada

Peter Altmaier

Federal Minister for Economic Affairs and Energy of the Federal Republic of Germany

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