18 June 2002 – A packed POWER-GEN Europe keynote session at the Fiera Milano last Tuesday heard John Rice, CEO and president of GE Power Systems call for a global appreciation of the interdependence of the world’s power industry in tackling the issues that can improve electricity supply to the 30 per cent of the population without power.

“We are all part of the global energy game,” said Rice. “We must continue to push the efficiency envelope and address the issues of production costs and the environment.” Rice called on governments to remove trade barriers to allow for the effective international operation of power producers and said that appropriate rewards must be available to those who push forward technology.

Rice praised Europe and in particular the UK, for the progress made towards liberalization of the electricity industry and for its approach to environmental standards. He welcomed the recent decision by the Finnish parliament to back the construction of a fifth nuclear reactor and said that GE looked forward to supporting the application.

Delegates at the keynote also heard a presentation from Antonino Craparotta, CEO of Enel Produzione, who added his support to nuclear power generation as part of a balanced portfolio of generation. Sig. Craparotta welcomed the steps Italy has taken towards liberalizing the electricity market and said that it now had more competition than any other country within continental Europe. “Enel is ready to compete,” he said. “We are seeking to reduce the cost of generation by adopting most cost-effective fuel options, lowering O&M costs and asset restructuring ? bringing generation costs below those of new entrants,” said Craparotta.