Africa has abundant energy resources – but low access to modern energy services

The Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) estimates that demand for power will grow annually by 6% to 2040.  Present power generation capacity in Africa stands at around 124 gigawatts.  This will have to increase to 700 gigawatts by 2040 if demand is to be met.

The Energy Challenge

Over half of Africa’s 1.2 billion people live without access to electricity.  This is a major constraint to Africa’s economic development, while universal access to reliable, modern, sustainable energy can turbo-charge growth across the continent.  Africa’s population is forecast to increase to 1.8 billion by 2040.  Coupled with the modernising of Africa’s economies, and increasing urbanisation & industrialisation, this means demand for energy will grow annually by 6% to 2040.  Meeting this demand will require power generation capacity to increase from the current 124 gigawatts to 700 gigawatts by 2040.

Addressing the Energy Challenge

Africa’s energy challenge can be overcome.  The continent’s energy resources are sufficient to meet its needs, and there are limitless opportunities to develop clean/renewable energy.  To exploit these resources will require greater levels of investment in the sector, at both national and regional levels, together with political commitment backed by strengthened policy and regulatory frameworks.  The ICA encourages investment in Africa’s energy sector through facilitating dialogue, providing training to improve public skills and facilitate private sector participation, enhancing coordination and sharing information.

Building Quality Infrastructure for Africa's Development

Report - 2016

This background paper was commissioned by the Infrastructure Consortium for Africa (ICA) and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in preparation for the Annual Meeting of the Infrastructure Consortium for Africa (ICA), which took place in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, on 21 and 22 November 2016.

Infrastructure Financing Trends in Africa – 2015 Report

Report - 2016

The ICA’s annual publication about infrastructure financing trends (the seventh in the series) identifies how resources are being mobilised to make an impact on Africa’s infrastructure development.

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