Summary of the first meeting of the Slovak Round Table

The first meeting of the Slovak Round Table took place according to plan on 31 March 2022. At the beginning, all participants were welcomed and an introductory speech was made by the President of the Association of Construction Entrepreneurs of Slovakia and the General Director of the Slovak Innovation and Energy Agency. The meeting continued with a presentation of the tasks and goals of the round table, as well as a reminder of the thematic clusters for the Round Table series. Subsequently, the moderator drew attention to further details on the rules determining what sustainable investments are and further details on the objectives of the Green Deal for Buildings set out in the documents sent to the participants by e-mail before the meeting. A brief introduction of all participants took place before the start of the presentations.

The introductory part was followed by a plenary session with presentations on “Financing Sustainable Investments” and “Linking Sustainable Investments with the IEA and EU 10-point plan to reduce the EU’s dependence on natural gas from Russia and the European Action Plan for Affordable, Secure and Sustainable Energy”.

Subsequently, the main point of the meeting took place – the stakeholder discussion. The main topics covered during the discussion were the implementation of deep building renovation projects, the importance of quality of new technologies and settings of their parameters instead of applying the cheapest solutions, EU taxonomy, how to define energy savings, energy savings by reducing heating temperature, energy education and energy literacy of ordinary people, adjustment of subsidy conditions for the renovation of family houses and further steps within the GreenDeal4Buildings project.

The discussion took place regarding these points:

  • To what extent have stakeholders already addressed the expected changes in the transformation to sustainable business activities and sustainable investments;
  • Where stakeholders see possible points of contact or common interests in developing funding and support schemes on which round tables could work (with the support of external experts if necessary – similar projects and Sustainable Energy Investment Forums are taking place in all Member States, accumulating extensive know-how which we can use) – e.g. civil energy communities, PED, PEB, smart energy services, etc.;
  • Where coalitions (or project consortia) could be formed for joint activities aimed at:
    • use of heat pumps (gas or coal replacement);
    • the use of green hydrogen to provide heating and hot water in residential areas, neighborhoods;
    • further electrification of transport, heating and hot water;
    • decarbonisation of flexibility and development of smart energy services that combine energy efficiency with distributed sources of electricity production from RES, energy storage (batteries), e-mobile charging, integration of energy sectors (buildings, transport, industry);
  • In terms of increasing energy targets by 2030, where stakeholders see reserves that could be used to accelerate the transformation to clean energy;
  • Digitization will be faster in the energy sector than expected – in which areas support schemes and investments could support stakeholder efforts to cope with the digital transformation;
  • The end of globalization (including appeasment policy) will create further opportunities for Slovakia to join the European value chains. What opportunities do stakeholders see in order to attract sustainable investments in energy, construction, production of prefabricated buildings, construction products, etc.

The discussion was followed by the division of participants into two parallel groups – sustainable energy and construction and the value chain and financing of sustainable investments – which then discussed and worked on relevant topics.

After the coffee and snack break, the expert groups:

  • Identified priorities for the clusters, which will be broken down into individual round table meetings (proposals for a Green Deal for Buildings from 1 cluster from each group, i.e. proposals from 3 clusters together will be included for consideration at each round table meeting); proposals will be prepared by partners and expert groups and discussed in expert groups (online, F2F, via email, etc. at the discretion of each expert group) and sent to stakeholders in advance (10 days before the meeting);
  • Agreed on a timetable for preparation of proposals for meetings by the end of the year;
  • Agreed on possible monothematic meetings/seminars/workshops if the members of the working groups were interested and if it was necessary for the elaboration of quality proposals.

Schedule of next meetings of the Slovak Round Table

Support measures to be included in the Roadmaps

  1. Development of a national strategy for sustainable energy investments (the measure was supported by 95% of stakeholders);
  2. Further development of measures to reduce Slovakia’s dependence on natural gas from Russia. The individual steps of the 10-point program were assigned the following relevance for stakeholders (it will serve as a priority for the elaboration of measures):
    • Point 1: Do not conclude new contracts for gas imports from Russia – 30%;
    • Point 2: Replacement of gas with other alternatives (low carbon gases) – 39%;
    • Point 3: Adhere to the minimum levels of natural gas storage – 17%;
    • Point 4: Acceleration of the implementation of wind and solar energy projects – 74%;
    • Point 5: Maximize production from existing low-emission sources: bioenergy and nuclear – 30%;
    • Point 6: Short-term measures to protect the population from energy poverty – 61%;
    • Point 7: Acceleration of exchange of gas boilers for heat pumps – 74%;
    • Point 8: Acceleration of increasing energy efficiency in buildings and industry – 87%;
    • Point 9: Influence consumers in order to reduce the temperature of heating (overheating) of apartments by at least 1 degree Celsius – 43%;
    • Point 10: Acceleration of decarbonisation and diversification of sources of flexibility in energy systems (including smart energy services and integration of energy sectors) – 39%.
  3. Elaboration and establishment of the Platform for Financing Green Investments and Renovation of Buildings to the EPB standard (the measure was consensually supported by the participants of the meeting of the Expert Group on Construction and Value Chain and the Expert Group on Financing Sustainable Energy Investments);
  4. Priorities assigned by the Construction and Value Chain Expert Group (average voting priority from 1 [minimum] to 5 [maximum]):
    • Financing of education and further education at all levels for the implementation of innovations – 3.90;
    • Necessary changes in policies and legislative conditions to support innovation – 2.79;
    • Support for SMEs in implementing innovations – 2.58;
    • Support for applied research and innovation development – 2.47;
    • Financing of education and further education at all levels for the implementation of innovations – 2.0;

    Average priorities do not indicate the overall priority for a given cluster, but the relative priority within 5 agreed clusters.

  5. Priorities assigned to the cluster by the Expert Group on the Financing of Sustainable Energy Investments (average priority for voting from 1 [minimum] to 5 [maximum]):
    • Platform for financing sustainable green investments and renovations of buildings to the EPB standard – 3.47;
    • Standardization of sustainable investment project evaluation – 3.06;
    • Legislative changes to support sustainable energy solutions – 3.06;
    • EU taxonomy for sustainable investment and implementation of ESG in the private sector – 1.94;
    • Reducing the risks of sustainable energy investments – 1.59

Average priorities do not indicate the overall priority for a given cluster, but the relative priority within 5 agreed clusters.

You can download the Press Release HERE (in Slovak language).