The ninth session of the Assembly of International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) started on 11 January 2019 at the St Regis Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Heads of state and governments, more than 120 ministers and representatives from 160 countries gathered to engage in high-level discussions to accelerate renewable energy deployment in support of the sustainable development goals and global climate objectives. This is the largest number of ministerial level participants to have registered for an IRENA Assembly ever.

In his welcome address, Director-General of IRENA Adnan Z. Amin announced that four new members joined IRENA - Canada, Paraguay, Chad, Turkmenistan and 23 countries - in the accession process. Canada became the Agency’s 160th member to join the global intergovernmental organisation dedicated to the widespread adoption of renewable energy.

The annual growth of RES capacity in 2018 reached a world record of 170 GW, of which wind and solar projects account for 85%. Since 2010, the average cost of electricity from solar PV and wind energy has fallen by 75% and 20-33% respectively.

“The global energy transformation driven by renewables can reduce energy-related geopolitical tensions as we know them and will foster greater cooperation between states. This transformation can also mitigate social, economic and environmental challenges that are often among the root causes of geopolitical instability and conflict,” said Adnan Z. Amin, Director-General of IRENA.

The Ukrainian delegation is represented by Taras Tokarsky, Deputy Minister of Regional Development, Construction and Housing and Communal Services of Ukraine; Yuriy Polurez, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Ukraine to the United Arab Emirates and Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA); Sergiy Savchuk, Chairman of the State Agency on Energy Efficiency and Energy Saving of Ukraine (SAEE), representatives of the SAEE and the Ukrainian Embassy in the UAE. The Ukrainian delegation also includes Andriy Konechenkov, Chairman of the UWEA Board and Igor Tynny, founder of the Ukrainian Renewable Energy Association. For the first time Ruslana Lyzhychko, the winner of Eurovision Song Contest, the Ambassador of Renewable Energy in the world, takes part in the IRENA Assembly.