FOREIGN AFFAIRS – ENERGY SECURITY – 25 April 2006

Dr Julian Lewis: Does the Minister accept that part of the Foreign Office's role is to ensure that this country does not become over-dependent on other countries for the security of our energy supplies? In that context, does he share my fear that growing dependence on Russian oil pipelines diminishes rather than increases the possibility of fulfilling that strategic aim?

[The Minister for Europe (Mr Douglas Alexander): Of course I accept that energy security will be one of the emerging challenges of the decades ahead, and that we and our European partners must work in partnership to address three interlinked problems – energy security, the related issue of the diversity of supply, and the need to ensure a genuinely open market in energy supply in the EU. The EU's recently published strategy document refers to the problem of energy security, and I assure the hon. Gentleman that we continue to work on it right across Government.]