Launch of the Platform Initiative for Coal Regions in Western Balkans and Ukraine

On 10-11 December 2020, the Platform Initiative for Coal Regions in Western Balkans and Ukraine held its first meeting.

The initiative is a joint undertaking of the World Bank, the European Commission, the College of Europe in Natolin, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the Polish National Fund for Environmental Protection and Water Management, and the Energy Community Secretariat. It was conceived following the Coal Regions in Transition High-level Policy Talk at the College of Europe in Natolin on 13 September 2019.

The aim of the Platform is to assist coal regions in the Western Balkans and Ukraine in preparations for the design and execution of just coal transition programmes, as well as for viable development strategies for the post-transition period. In providing this support, the Platform will assist a comprehensive group of stakeholders, including i.a. representatives of central and local authorities, self-governments, local communities, coal mine authorities, workers, trade unions, NGOs or the business community. The Platform will deliver knowledge, facilitate experience sharing and twin partners in the Western Balkans with their counterparts who have already successfully embarked upon and completed their transition.

On 19 November 2020, the College of Europe in Natolin and the World Bank signed a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the field of provision of assistance to coal regions in transition. In the framework of the Memorandum, both Parties will work together to support high-carbon regions in the understanding of viable pathways that might be pursued during the process of just coal transition. This will be done through preparation and by making accessible a body of knowledge across a wide array of issues associated with energy transition in coal regions.