On 17 June 2009, eight Baltic Sea Member States signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the Baltic Energy Market Interconnection Plan. The BEMIP is the fruit of nine months work at the initiative of the European Commission (EC) to look at concrete measures to connect Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia better to wider EU energy networks.
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In November 2008, the EC adopted the Second Strategic Energy Review. Effective interconnection of the Baltic Sea region was identified as one of the six priority energy infrastructure projects. The main goals of the BEMIP initiative, within the context of the EU's 20/20/20 objectives are the full integration of the three Baltic States into the European energy market, through the strengthening of interconnections with their EU neighbouring countries.
A High Level Group has been set up with the participation of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Sweden and, as an observer Norway. The Group, chaired by the EC, started to meet in November 2008 and delivered an action plan in June 2009. Working groups on electricity and gas, as well as external consultants supported the work.
The BEMIP also forms part - as two flagship projects on market integration and infrastructure development, respectively - of the "EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region". Monitoring of the implementation of the BEMIP has been contributed to the EC; first progress report were presented to the High Level Group in December 2009.