International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA)
Freetown 13th January, 2011 – Sierra Leone was late last year unanimously elected as Chair of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) at its 5th Preparatory Commission Meeting held in Abu Dhabi, U.A.E. Norway, Pakistan, Tonga and Guatemala were elected Vice Chair.
The elevation of Sierra Leone to this high ranking international position was due to the visionary leadership of H.E the President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma and the collaborative efforts of the former Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Mrs. Zainab Hawa Bangura, the Minister of Energy and Water Resources, Prof. Ogunlade Davidson, Special Envoy of His Excellency the President Mr. Siray Timbo, the Development Secretary, Mr. Umaru Wurie and the Trade Commissioner of Sierra Leone in the United Arab Emirates, Mr. Bahige Annan.
The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) was officially established in Bonn on 26 January 2009. To Date 148 states and the European Union signed the Statute of the Agency; amongst them are 48 African, 38 European, 35 Asian, 17 American and 10 Australia/Oceania States.
Mandated by these Governments worldwide, IRENA will promote the widespread and increased adoption and sustainable use of all forms or renewable energy. Acting as the global voice for renewable energies, IRENA will facilitate access to all relevant renewable energy information, including technical data.
As of today, 148 countries, African and the European Unions have signed IRENA’s Statute, in addition to 42 countries that have ratified it, including Sierra Leone.
At its 4th Preparatory Commission meeting held on 24th and 25th October, 2010, in Abu Dhabi, which had an attendance of 400 delegates from more than 100 countries including 20 Ministers, an agreement was reached on the 2011 budget and Work Program. The discussions were based on an $18 million budget. 38% of which will come from the Member States, 42% from the Bid agreement with the United Arab Emirates, 14% from the German Bid and 6% from the Austrian Bid for the Bonn Innovation & Technology Center and the Vienna Liaison Office.
Irena will officially become a full fledged UN Agency in April 2011, after the 5th and last Preparatory Commission meeting which will be followed by the 1st General Assembly of Irena.
Ministry of Information and Communication, Freetown
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