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Webinar: UKABC Roundtable Partner Conversation with Ken O’Flaherty COP26 Ambassador for Asia Pacific and South Asia


Southeast Asia’s high growth economies and increasing populations is leading to stronger demands for energy. The region needs to accelerate energy transition, increase renewable energy adoption and reduce the use of fossil fuel, to achieve its commitments to the Paris Agreement. COP26 Ambassador for Asia Pacific and South Asia, Ken O’Flaherty, will discuss with UKABC partners how the regions climate change goals can be achieved with UK government and private sector collaboration and the initiatives planned for the region.

ASEAN has committed to meeting a target of 23% of renewable energy in total primary energy demand by 2025. Around 70% of the region’s energy mix comes from fossil fuel, of which a growing proportion comes from coal. Renewable energy has great potential but currently only meets around 15% of ASEAN’s energy demand.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) noted that energy demand in Southeast Asia will grow as much as 60% by 2040. The IEA recommends four areas that will help ASEAN’s sustainable development:

  • Scaling up the deployment of renewables.
  • A major focus on improving energy efficiency especially in fast-growing sectors such as cooling and road transport.
  • Getting prices right by phasing out fossil fuel subsidies.
  • Using technology, such as carbon capture, utilisation and storage, to reduce emissions from the power sector and from industry.

The roundtable will be an opportunity to hear how COP26 initiatives can help Southeast Asia achieve its climate change commitments and identify areas of focus in ASEAN for the year ahead.

Areas of discussion

  • Updates on COP26 and the Race to Zero campaign in ASEAN
  • How can UK government and business contribute to ASEAN’s climate change and sustainability journey?
  • What are the concerns and challenges of the ASEAN governments in achieving net zero?
  • What is the role of technology, finance and education in progressing climate change in the region?

This event is for UKABC partners. To find out more about partnership opportunities contact ken.wells@ukabc.org.uk.


9.00 Welcome remarks

• Baroness Neville-Rolfe DBE CMG, Chair, UK-ASEAN Business Council

9.05 Partner conversation 

• Ken O’Flaherty, COP26 Ambassador for Asia Pacific and South Asia

Chaired by Baroness Neville-Rolfe DBE CMG, Chair, UK-ASEAN Business Council

10.00 Roundtable concludes


Baroness Neville-Rolfe, DBE CMG Chair
UK-ASEAN Business Council

Lucy has had 3 careers, in politics in business and in the civil service. Currently, she is a Conservative peer, sitting on the Lords EU Committee (and its Financial Services sub-committee), is Chairman of Crown Agents (a not for profit business dating back to 1833) and is a non-executive director of Capita plc, Secure Trust Bank Plc, Thomson Reuters Founders Share Company and Health Data Research UK.

Ken O’Flaherty
COP26 Regional Ambassador to Asia Pacific and South Asia

Ken O’Flaherty is the COP26 Regional Ambassador for South Asia and the Asia-Pacific region. He has recently returned from a posting in Rome, where he worked closely with the Italian government ahead of our joint bid for the UK to host COP26. He has experience in several Foreign Office Departments and has previously served in the British embassies in Tokyo and Paris as well as the former UK Representation to the European Union. Ken has worked on a wide range of issues throughout his career from climate change and energy to economic, EU cooperation, security, counterterrorism and migration issues.

Further reading

UK convenes ASEAN-COP26 Climate Dialogue. Gov.UK
Southeast Asia Energy Outlook 2019. IEA
Southeast Asia can reach clean energy targets by investing in transmission. IEA
ASEAN Plan of Action for Energy Cooperation (APAEC). ASEAN Centre for Energy
ASEAN Climate Action: A Review of Nationally Determined Contributions Updated in 2020. ASEAN Centre for Energy

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