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UK and Germany partner to further advance hydrogen developments

05 October 2023

The UK and Germany have signed an agreement to help accelerate the development of an international hydrogen industry. Signed on 26 September at the UK Embassy in Berlin, a Joint Declaration of Intent will see the UK and Germany work together to underpin the international trade in hydrogen.

Lord Callanan and Philip Nimmermann - Image: UK Gov
Lord Callanan and Philip Nimmermann - Image: UK Gov

The two governments will also accelerate the role of low-carbon hydrogen in their nations’ energy mix. They also committed to work together to further advance ground-breaking and renewable hydrogen technologies, supporting jobs and low-carbon investment.

The partnership follows significant investment by both countries in the development of hydrogen as an alternative fuel. In the UK, the government is supporting new low-carbon hydrogen production with capital from the £240 million Net Zero Hydrogen Fund and revenue support from the Hydrogen Production Business Model. In Germany, the government is also supporting the implementation of the National Hydrogen Strategy with funding from the Climate and Transformation Fund, providing a push for the ramp-up of a hydrogen market.

It will also further boost the move towards net zero emissions by 2050, and the energy security of both countries, moving away from fossil fuels and towards cleaner and more secure, diversified alternatives.

UK’s Minister for Energy Efficiency and Green Finance Lord Callanan said: “The UK and Germany are natural partners in making low-carbon hydrogen a cleaner and more sustainable way to power up our societies.

“This agreement will underpin the development of this new fuel not just for our respective countries but also for an international trade that could be transformative in our work towards achieving net zero emissions by 2050. It is through these partnerships that we can move away from expensive fossil fuels – and in doing so boost our energy security.”

Federal Republic of Germany’s State Secretary for Energy, Philip Nimmermann said: “With this declaration we are on our way to jointly help developing the European and international markets for hydrogen. Our cooperation will not just involve trading of hydrogen and its derivatives, but also cooperation on technologies and innovation in this field, which will be of mutual benefit for both Germany and the UK.

“Hydrogen is of the highest importance for us to meet our goals regarding emission reduction. Also, it is a great opportunity for business. I am looking forward to a successful partnership.”

Five pillars of collaboration were agreed by the leaders:

- Accelerating the deployment of hydrogen projects for industry and consumers
- Establishing international leadership on hydrogen markets, setting safety and regulations to aid trade
- Research and innovation on hydrogen, from production to end use
- Promoting trade for hydrogen, plus related goods, technologies and services
- Joint market analysis, to support planning and investment by government and industry

This work is set to make hydrogen technologies cheaper and more accessible, aiming to lower energy costs for consumers in the future, the two countries said.

Providing supportive environments, the countries will discuss safety standards that can be used internationally with the aim to establish reliable, stable markets for sustainable low carbon hydrogen, in particular from renewables.

The agreement will further help the UK and Germany reach their respective goals of net zero emissions by 2050 and to secure a reliable energy supply for economic and energy security purposes, recognising the shifting geopolitical landscape, they said.

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