Press Releases

    For information only - not an official document

    16 June 2011

    Re-issued as received

    Hofburg to Host Vienna Energy Forum Next Week

    VIENNA, 16 June (UN Information Service) - Over 1,000 participants, including heads of State, ministers, energy experts, representatives of international and non-governmental organizations, academia, civil society and the private sector are expected to take part in the Vienna Energy Forum (VEF) that opens at the Hofburg Palace in Vienna on 21 June.

    The three-day event is being organized by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the Austrian Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA).

    The Forum will discuss how energy poverty, recognized as a major development obstacle, can be overcome while the decarbonisation of energy systems is accelerated. Participants will work towards promoting global initiatives to achieve universal access to sustainable energy for all, as called for by the UN General Assembly. The Forum will see the pre-launch of the Global Energy Assessment (GEA), an initiative to define a new global energy agenda for a rapidly changing world involving more than 500 scientists and experts around the world.

    Key speakers will include, among others, Filip Vujanović, President of the Republic of Montenegro; Olusegun Obasanjo, former President of Nigeria; Henry Puna, Prime Minister, Cook Islands; Julio Maria Sanguinetti Coirolo, former President of Uruguay; Eike Batista, CEO, EBX Group; Johannes Kyrle, Secretary General for Foreign Affairs, Austrian Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs; Irene Freudenschuss-Reichl, Director-General, Austrian Development Cooperation, Austrian Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs; Monique Barbut, CEO and Chairperson, Global Environment Facility; Elizabeth Dipuo Peters, Minister of Energy, South Africa; Abdalla Salem El-Badri, Secretary General, OPEC; Suleiman J. Al-Herbish, Director General, OPEC Fund for International Development; Marc Perrin de Brichambaut, Secretary-General, Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe; and Rebeca Grynspan, Associate Administrator, UN Development Programme UNDP).

    Former Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger will also deliver a key note address at the Forum.

    Journalists are invited to attend the Forum, which opens at 8:30 a.m., on Tuesday, 21 June, at the Hofburg's Großer Redoutensaal (entrance from Josefsplatz) and a news conference at 10.45 a.m..

    As the accreditation has already ended, journalists interested in covering the event, should send a request to

    UNIDO Director-General, Kandeh K. Yumkella, in cooperation with the UNDP and the Government of Austria, has also invited members of Círculo de Montevideo to hold their annual session in Vienna during the week of the VEF.

    There will be a press opportunity with the Círculo de Montevideo at the Hofburg (Geheime Ratstube) at 13:30, on Friday, 24 June.

    * *** *

    For more information on the Círculo de Montevideo, please go to:

    To see the full programme of VEF 2011, please go to:

    For more information about UNIDO, please contact:

    Mikhail Evstafyev
    UNIDO Advocacy and Communications Coordinator
    Telephone: (+43-1) 26026-5021
    Mobile: (+43-699) 1459-7329
    Email: M.Evstafyev[at]


    Ravindra Wickremasinghe
    Advocacy and Communications Assistant
    Telephone: (+43-1) 26026-5022
    Mobile: (+43-699) 1112-3504
    Email R.Wickremasinghe[at]