Dear Delegates of the World Energy Council Executive Assembly,
It is indeed a great honour for me on behalf of the Icelandic people, to welcome the World Energy Council's Executive Assembly 2009 to take place here in Iceland.
In creating a new and more responsible global economic system, the transformation of the energy sector is a crucial priority.
Therefore, the discussions and the deliberations at the forthcoming WEC's EA in Reykjavik are more important than ever.
Ólafur Ragnar Grímsson
In our present situation, we Icelanders are fortunately aware that despite the current financial challenges, our long-term resources are fundamentally strong: enormous wealth in the potential for clean energy production, both geothermal and hydro. Iceland is both a theatre of climate change, affected directly by the melting of the ice and the circulation of the ocean currents and a demonstration site of successful solutions. All these factors make my country an excellent location for the WEC EA, and it is a great honour for Iceland to host it in 2009.
Iceland's success in the development of hydropower and geothermal resources demonstrates how renewable energy can become a permanent basis of our economies.
The Icelandic power industry is still thriving despite the economic difficulties which the world has experienced in recent months.
It is my sincere hope that your discussions in Iceland will play a major role in the forthcoming decision-making process and it is thus a great honour to me to grant my patronage to the World Energy Council and I welcome you all to Iceland.