More joint impulses for the energy transition: Recommendations of the GJETC for Germany and Japan

Berlin/Tokyo, 16 February 2018. After two years of extensive research and internal and public discussion, the German-Japanese Energy Transition Council (GJETC) this week in Berlin discussed joint recommendations to politics, industry and civil society in the two high-tech countries. This resulted in the first draft of a final report. The final version of the report, which will include all the results of the joint Council’s work, will be published in March 2018. However, four key recommendations for a successful energy transition are already visible:


Intensive discussion on the Council’s results (from l. to r.): Dagmar Dehmer (Journalist/Moderation), Prof. Masakazu Toyoda (GJETC Co-Chair), Prof. Dr. Peter Hennicke (GJETC Co-Chair), Prof. Dr. Miranda Schreurs (TU Munich), Prof. Koji Nomura (Keio Economic Observatory), Dr. Karsten Sach (BMUB)

  • Germany and Japan will have to restructure their energy systems over the next 30 years. Through the continuous exchange of knowledge and experience, the transformation process can be accelerated and made more effective.
  • The objectives of climate protection, security of supply, competitiveness and social acceptance can be achieved at the same time. To this end, long-term targets and strategies for a low-carbon energy system must be defined and ambitiously implemented by 2050. Bilateral cooperation in the creation of scenarios and cost/benefit analyses improve the basis for decision-making.
  • Germany and Japan are the leaders in energy efficiency. Nevertheless, both countries still have great, undeveloped potential. The implementation gap to the ambitious energy saving targets is large and must be closed quickly in order to exploit the enormous advantages of energy saving. To achieve this, the principle of “Efficiency First” must be implemented in an extended and effective energy-saving governance system.
  • The liberalisation of the electricity (and gas) sector is to be pursued ambitiously in order to achieve fair market conditions for a large number of diversified suppliers and innovative technologies. New business and consumer concepts such as prosumer, municipal utilities and energy cooperations must be promoted.

“Despite the different circumstances and starting positions, Japan and Germany can learn a lot from each other in the energy transition. This has been clearly demonstrated by the Council’s work over the last two years and is reflected in our recommendations”, said Masakazu Toyoda, GJETC’s Japanese Co-Chairman, in the course of the 4th Council Meeting at the Japanese-German Centre in Berlin. The results and recommendations come from four comprehensive studies on the energy transition in Germany and Japan commissioned by the Council at the end of 2016.

The possibilities for a successful energy transition are available. But the objectives and strategies, for example with regard to energy efficiency and the expansion of renewable energies, are not always consistent. This was also discussed repeatedly during the four council meetings. “Joint solutions for the energy transition can only be found if the different interests and political objectives of both partners are clearly articulated and respected. The work of the GJETC has contributed to strengthening the trusting, scientific dialogue between Germany and Japan”, said Prof. Dr. Peter Hennicke, German Co-Chairman of the GJETC.

On the occasion of the 4th Council Meeting, the GJETC hosted an Outreach event at the House of Federal Press Conference in Berlin on 16 February 2018. About 100 participants, among them energy experts, ministerial representatives, parliamentarians and NGOs, informed themselves about the current status of the Council’s work and discussed the first results and recommendations with the members of the GJETC. Another public event is already planned for 20th April 2018 in Berlin.