High energy prices challenge the EU’s global competitiveness, so the bloc must invest in renewable energy, EU Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen said on Tuesday, APA reports citing Anadolu Agency.
“The price we pay for energy is structurally higher than in other continents, and this is an issue for our global competitiveness,” von der Leyen asserted at the 2023 Green Deal Summit in Prague, the Czech Republic.
She explained that energy prices, which were ten times higher last summer, dropped to the level the EU paid before Russia launched a war on Ukraine but admitted that they still exceed the cost that countries outside the bloc pay.
According to von der Leyen, the EU must invest in renewables and “make cheap and clean energy available for all Europeans” that will also protect the bloc “against the high prices of imported fossil fuels.”
She welcomed the fact that “today, Europe, for the first time in our history, generates more electricity from wind and sun than from gas” but called on speeding up the green transition.
“Renewable energy is not only good for the planet, but it is home-grown, it creates good jobs here and it is good for our energy independence,” von der Leyen argued.
Announced right after the inauguration of the European Commission led by von der Leyen in 2019, the EU’s Green Deal program aims to achieve climate neutrality and zero carbon emission in the EU by 2050.