The 19th annual Africa Energy Forum (AEF) will take place from 7-9 June 2017 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The Forum’s arrival in Denmark for the first time will capitalise on the investment potential of Nordic countries into Africa and showcase the technologies being utilised to manage their cities cleanly and cost effectively – technologies which could perhaps be transferred to African nations.
Nineteen years in the running, AEF brings together senior-level representatives from governments, utilities, regulators, power developers, financial institutions, technology providers, consultants, law firms and large energy consumers to form partnerships, identify opportunities and collectively move the industry forward.
AEF 2016 attracted 2,100 participants from 80 countries, 32 of those being African. In addition, 5 major energy deals and mergers were announced at AEF 2016 in London from organisations including Harith General Partners, Africa Finance Corporation, World Bank Group, Mainstream Renewable Power and USTDA, demonstrating the role of the conference as a platform for industry developments.
Ahead of the Forum this June, we asked senior decision-makers from across the African power value chain to give us their insights into what developments to look out for in 2017 and beyond. The following extracts are taken from the Africa Energy Yearbook 2016.
Tarik Hamane, Director, Power Generation Projects and Programs, ONEE, Morocco:
What does the landscape for investment currently look like in Morocco’s power sector? How is this expected to change over the coming decade?
“From a long-term perspective, in the last 13 years we have had an interesting growth of the electricity and power demand (6.5%), and we expect to have around 6% average growth of electricity demand until 2030. In order to meet the growing demand of electricity, we need to increase the generation capacity. From 2016 -2030, we expect that the total investment into the power sector needs to be more than 30 billion dollars, concentrating on power generation, transportation and power storage facilities – mainly hydropower storage projects. This is a very large investment, which requires projects to be developed under a PPP framework. The projects will be mainly IPPs with a PPA signed with ONEE or MASEN (it depends on whether the project is in thermal generation or renewables).”
Willem Theron, General Manager, Southern African Energy Unit, Eskom, South Africa:
What’s the future for SADC’s electricity sector? How much regional decision-making is required and when will the tipping point be reached that will open the floodgates holding back the current stockpile of projects?
“The future is bright and opportunities are plentiful. We in the SADC community have already organised ourselves through a power pool arrangement, have the benefit of a liquid and growing electricity spot market and recently established a project advisor unit to advance key infrastructure projects to financial close. So steps in the right direction have been made for creating a greater SADC electricity sector. Governments are taking greater responsibilities in engaging and developing new energy resources to contribute to the region. Hence we are seeing improved decision-making at the different levels and commitments to developing bi- and multinational projects.”
H.E. Hon. Mamadou Keita, Minister of Energy & Water of the Republic of Mali:
What energy goals are in place for the future in Mali, and what needs to be done to achieve these?
“The objective of the energy policy of the country, adopted in 2006, is to achieve an electrification rate of 55% by 2020. The Government of Mali has placed at the heart of the energy cooperation strategy the commitment to help accelerate the electrification process by strengthening production capacity through the development of renewable energies. Thus, the department in charge of Energy has commissioned an optimal investment master plan for the electricity sector between the periods of 2015-2035. This sets out all the necessary investments into the production, transportation and distribution of electricity sub-sectors to achieve an electrification rate of at least 60% by 2035.”
Simon Gosling, Managing Director, EnergyNet:
What new perspectives and discussions do you expect to come out as a result of bringing the Africa Energy Forum (AEF) to Denmark this year?
“When I think back to over the last four years of AEF, 50% of the destinations we took the meeting to were not considered relevant or appealing when we made the announcements. All destinations ended up being huge successes for the governments and private sector organisations which attended, adding significant perspective and building new relationships which we see moving forward at our subsequent meetings. As an organiser that wants to contribute to the furtherment of the sector it’s important that we listen to our partners and learn from them so we can take investors and public sector stakeholders on a journey that opens their eyes to new ideas, technology and investors. Denmark is by all means one of those destinations that has it all, because the Nordic countries as a group are more than likely doing far more projects than governments and investors across Africa probably realise. You only have to research online to get an idea how advanced and efficient Denmark’s own energy mix is. In addition, cooperation across the Nordic states is well crafted and the ‘gold standard’ for regional diplomacy.
Whilst I fully expect AEF:2017 in Denmark to be a much more exclusive, high level forum by comparison to the hugeness of London which saw record breaking levels of attendance, I already know that Copenhagen, specifically for the aforementioned reasons, will be one of the most impactful, exciting and important forums African stakeholders are ever likely to attend.”
Visit www.africa-energy-forum.com for more details.
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