Africa on path to improving energy access

Time for talk has passed in Africa.

The continent is now committed to fast tracking large-scale provision of energy by prioritizing its energy generation and transmission to drive economic growth and job creation. Energy advisors of the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) notes that they want to increase people’s access to energy and to make the access affordable, secure and reliable. Currently, they are focused on massive infrastructural projects as a faster way to increase access to energy.

In January 2016, African heads of state and governments approved the Program for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) Energy Vision, setting energy provision as a high priority.

At the continental level, African leaders seeks to connect four power pool corridors and eventually have one massive power pool. China has been playing a crucial role in this while the continent also looks forward to working with other development partners like the World Bank, Africa Development Bank, among others.

The continent has to balance the grid for long-term sustainability and affordability and there are a mix of solar panels, hydropower and wind in Ethiopia, he said.

The PIDA Energy Vision envisages an increase of Africa’s installed power generation capacity to 700 gigawatts by 2040. Through full implementation of the program, the continent will reap savings on electricity production costs of 30 billion U.S. dollars a year through power interconnectors.

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