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Wicks calls for a common European energy policy

Energy minister Malcolm Wicks called for a common energy policy to address the growing energy crisis and the hindrance of incompatible market structures in a speech made yesterday to a Friends of Europe think-tank in Brussels.
His speech came in light of a new study revealing that the UK's electricity and gas markets are the most liberalised across the EU and the G7. The report Energy Market Competitiveness Rankings for the EU and G7 by Oxford Economic Research Associates (OXERA) highlighted that the UK is performing beyond the rest of Europe in terms of its degree of energy markets liberalisation. Commenting ahead of his speech yesterday, Wicks said: 'Britain has led the way in opening up its energy market and in encouraging other members to do likewise. As this OXERA report demonstrates, the UK is the most liberalised in the EU and G7.'Moving forward to meet the formidable challenges of increasing European competitiveness, securing our supply and fighting climate change it is essential that a common European Energy Policy is developed.'The need for this is clear. As we found out last week, serious power shortages across mainland Europe can and do happen. Single markets here undermine our free market messages to developing countries and the Stern report left no doubt that action to reduce emissions is needed now rather than later. I expect the Commission's Strategic Energy Review early next year to consider these issues closely.'

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