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SYNERGY is a co-operation programme managed by the Directorate General for Energy and Transport (DG TREN) of the European Commission. It finances co-operation activities with non EU countries in the field of the formulation and implementation of energy policy to the mutual benefit of all parties concerned. The European Union (EU) became involved in energy related co-operation projects following the oil crises in the 1980s, with the "EC International Energy Co-operation Programme", which has evolved into today's "SYNERGY" programme.
The objectives of the SYNERGY programme are in line with those set out in the White Paper "An energy policy for the European Union". SYNERGY should therefore improve the competitiveness of Community industries, enhance the security of supply, promote sustainable development and improve energy efficiency. According to the new Guidelines for the Synergy programme, which have been published in the Official Journal of 5.5.01 (L125/24), the implemetation of the programme will refocus on activities related to security of supply and implementation of the Kyoto protocol.
Unlike other EU programmes that are of a more general nature and include energy as one of several aims, SYNERGY is a specific energy policy programme covering the external dimension of EU actions in the energy policy sector. As it is not an assistance but a cooperation programme, SYNERGY's projects are carried out following action taken by European organisations and the European Commission.