Energy Working Group

APEC collaboration on energy aims to help progress towards two specific aspirational goals:

  • to double the share of renewables in the APEC energy mix, including in power generation by 2030, as set in the 2014 APEC Economic Leaders Declaration  
  • to reduce APEC’s aggregate energy intensity by 45 per cent, from 2005 levels by 2035, as set out in the 2011 APEC Economic Leaders’ Declaration

Accounting for about 60 per cent of world energy demand, the APEC region includes four of the world's five largest energy users—China, the United States, Russia and Japan.

According to data from the International Energy Agency, the region consumed the equivalent of over 8,000 million tons of oil (or Mtoe) in 2013, and was a net energy importer. That year the region imported over 650 Mtoe, 90 per cent of which was actual oil.

According to “APEC Energy Demand and Supply Outlook (6th Edition)”—a report produced by the Asia Pacific Energy Research Centre (APERC)—the energy consumption of APEC members by 2040 is forecast to increase 35 per cent above 2013 levels, highlighting the region’s ability to decouple energy demand from economic growth.

If the region’s current approach towards energy continues, business as usual, over 80 per cent of APEC’s primary energy demand in 2040 is forecast to be met by fossil fuels. Carbon dioxide emissions from fuel combustion are expected to continue on an upward trend and go up 24 per cent.

The report, building on the current work of APEC members, produced models for several alternative scenarios that factor in strengthened efforts to improve energy efficiency and accelerate the deployment of renewable energy, which will be needed in order to meet the region’s energy goals.  

These factors make energy cooperation an increasingly important agenda item for APEC.

APEC’s Energy Working Group (EWG) was launched in 1990. It seeks to maximize the energy sector's contribution to the region's economic and social well-being, while mitigating the environmental effects of energy supply and use. The Energy Working Group’s work is guided by its current Strategic Plan (2014-2018). EWG’s mission is to build the capacity of APEC members to strengthen domestic and regional energy security and lower the carbon intensity of energy supply and use across the region, facilitated by information and data exchanges, joint research and development, and open trade and investment.

APEC energy cooperation is conducted under the framework of the Energy Security Initiative (ESI), which was first put forward by the EWG in 2000. The objective of the ESI is to prepare the region for potential energy supply disruptions and subsequent impacts on economic activities.  The ESI covers a range of issues including: the Monthly Oil Data Initiative, maritime security, real-time emergency information sharing, oil supply emergency response, energy investment, natural gas trade, nuclear power, energy efficiency, renewable energy, hydrogen, methane hydrates, and clean fossil energy.

The EWG is assisted by four expert groups and two task forces:

  • Clean Fossil Energy (EGCFE)
  • Energy Data and Analysis (EGEDA)
  • Energy Efficiency and Conservation (EGEEC)
  • New and Renewable Energy Technologies (EGNRET)
  • Low Carbon Model Town Task Force (LCMT-TF)
  • Energy Resiliency Task Force (ER-TF).

Further information on the mandate and activities of the Energy Working Group and each of its subgroups is available on the website links on this page.

The EWG is further supported by two subsidiary research bodies, the Asia Pacific Energy Research Centre (APERC) and the APEC Sustainable Energy Centre (APSEC).

  • The Asia Pacific Energy Research Centre (APERC) was established in July 1996 in Tokyo, as an affiliate of the Institute of Energy Economics, Japan (IEEJ), in accordance with the Action Agenda adopted by APEC Economic Leaders when they met in Osaka in November 1995. The primary objective of APERC is to foster understanding amongst APEC economies of global, regional and domestic energy demand and supply trends, energy infrastructure development, energy regulatory reform, and related policy issues to promote regional prosperity.
  • The APEC Sustainable Energy Centre (APSEC) was established in 2015 at Tianjin University, China, following endorsement by APEC Economic Leaders in Beijing in 2014.  APSEC aims to promote advanced ideas and models of sustainable energy development across the APEC region, and facilitate cooperation among member economies in information exchange, policy dialogue, technology R&D, demonstration and dissemination, and capacity building in the field of sustainable energy.

Noting that cooperation and partnership are essential to addressing energy security and environmental challenges, the EWG has further strengthened collaboration with other international energy fora on a broad range of issues, including maritime energy transport security, emergency preparedness, energy efficiency, and clean energy technology. The International Energy Agency (IEA), the International Copper Association (ICA) and the World Energy Council (WEC), as well as Mongolia, currently have guest status in the EWG.  Many other organizations and stakeholders, such as the Collaborative Labelling and Appliance Standards Program (CLASP) and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), are also working with APEC Expert Groups and projects on specific energy challenges.

Last page update: November 2017

Current Activities

APEC Energy Ministers met in Cebu, The Philippines, on 13 October 2015 and issued the Cebu Declaration and Instructions. Ministers emphasized the importance of energy resiliency in the face of the effects of man-made and natural disasters and established a new Energy Working Group Task Force to take this work forward.  Ministers also welcomed the new APEC Initiative for Enhancing the Quality of Electric Power Infrastructure taking into various factors into consideration including resilience to disasters, lifecycle costs and environmental impacts.  Ministers also instructed officials to implement an APEC Green Energy Finance Initiative in support of the financial sustainability of renewable energy and energy efficiency development in the region.  See this news release for more information.

At the latest meeting of the Energy Working Group (EWG52) held in Moscow, Russia in October 2016 members reviewed progress towards their goals and charted the way ahead for collaboration, including through APEC’s energy projects. 

Energy Working Group Project Process

In 2009 an APEC Sub-Fund for Energy Efficiency and Low-Carbon Measures was established with a contribution from the Government of Japan. This Sub-fund continues to support a wide range of energy-related technical capacity building projects supporting cooperation between APEC members. The general procedures for applying for APEC project funding are available here.

In addition to these general procedures, the Energy Working Group follows an Internal Project Assessment Process which supports the thorough review of all project applications at its meetings.  Under this process the next Internal Submission Deadline for Energy Working Group is 10 March 2017 for projects applying for funding under Session 2, 2017.  By this date applicants must submit their concept note to the relevant EWG Expert Group or Taskforce Chair.

EWG has a large number of projects covering technical cooperation and capacity building across a wide range of energy issues, in line with the Energy Working Group Strategic Plan.  Most of these projects each produce an APEC Publication, so please look at the Publications tab for the latest reports.  The Publications and Projects links on this webpage will take you to further information on specific EWG projects and collaborative activities.

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In 2015, at the 50th meeting of the Energy Working Group, which was held in Hawaii and co-hosted by Japan and the United States, the APEC Energy Working Group Success Stories publication was released, highlighting some of the many successful activities the EWG has undertaken since its first meeting in 1990.

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Contact Us

Jyuung-Shiauu CHERN

Lead Shepherd
Bureau of Energy
Ministry of Economic Affairs, Chinese Taipei

Ms Penelope HOWARTH

Program Director