Africa Energy Indaba reveals exciting energy opportunities at ambassador’s briefing

The Africa Energy Indaba (AEI) team has revealed its agenda for the February 2015 event, which is set to draw a variety of global energy, government and business players who are keen to see what energy projects and opportunities are available on the African continent.

Organisers and steering committee members of Africa’s premier energy event addressed a number of ambassadors recently at the Sandton Convention Centre about opportunities on offer at the 2015 AEI event. The embassies have been vital partners to the growing success of Africa Energy Indaba as many of them use the event to introduce business opportunities to their representative nations and to catalyse new partnerships and potential business deals with companies looking to do business in Africa.

“We believe that Africa will only progress if Africans helps themselves. That’s where the Africa Energy Indaba comes in. It’s an African event, owned by Africans, attended by Africans, sharing the African experience and intended to unlock solutions for Africans,” said Brian Statham, steering committee chair of the Africa Energy Indaba.

Africa is not progressing with the rest of the world; energy access rates in Africa are the worst in the world. Only in four countries in Africa do 50% of the population have formal access to energy. Access to energy and the eradication of poverty is strongly linked to affordable energy prices.

However, Africa is rich in natural resources and solar, gas and large hydropower energy will provide the majority of new supply growth in Africa. The development of human resources and strengthening of organisational capabilities to execute large power projects will be paramount moving forward.

“The Africa Energy Indaba is a forum where those with valuable resources of knowledge and experience from anywhere in the world can constructively engage with Africans who have the passion and the aspiration to improve the lives of hundreds of millions of fellow Africans,” said Statham.

The 2015 programme, which boasts several new and exciting side events, was highlighted by Managing Director, Liz Hart, from Siyenza, the organisers of the event. The Indaba Energy Leaders’ Dialogue will bring together global and regional energy leaders to exchange views on critical issues facing the energy industry in informal, off the record discussions. This high-level, invitation-only event will give participants the opportunity to discuss Natural Gas Development in Sub-Saharan Africa, the Global Electricity Initiative and the controversial South African Minerals Bill.

Other side events include an IPP & PPA conference, a Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL) Forum, an Africa Energy Projects Roundtable, the launch of the much-anticipated Women in Energy Forum, a Nuclear Forum, an Energy Efficiency workshop and an Electricity Theft workshop. Many of these workshops have been sponsored by prominent corporations playing in the African energy space.

Professor Mosad Elmissiry, the head of energy programmes at NEPAD, also briefed ambassadors – on the United Nations’ Sustainable Energy for All initiative (SE4ALL), which was launched by UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon in 2012. It has three objectives to be achieved by 2030, namely:

1) Energy access for all by 2030
2) Doubling the share of renewables in the total energy mix
3) Doubling the rate of energy efficiency

Africa will achieve its energy objectives by catalysing major investment opportunities to speed up the transformation of its energy systems.  The New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), together with the African Union Commission (AUC), and the African Development Bank  (AFDB) have responded by forming the Africa SE4ALL Coordination Hub, which is currently assisting selected countries with the development of their energy action agendas and investment prospectus.

So far, 43 African countries have opted into SE4ALL out of 88 globally.  Africa has 15 planned energy programmes comprising 53 projects through the NEPAD Agency’s Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA). These projects include various regional transmission corridors, a gas and oil pipeline and nine generation projects, amongst others.  The Africa Energy Indaba 2015 will brief delegates on the status and progress of these African energy projects.

Recognised as the foremost African energy event on the continent, Africa Energy Indaba receives the highest level of endorsement and support for an African energy event.  It is the regional event of the World Energy Council (WEC), having been supported by the WEC since 2011.  The event is represented by a strategic partner the South African National Energy Association (SANEA) and is also supported by the African Union and the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NPCA).  The exhibition is sponsored by the Gauteng Department of Infrastructure Development. With the support of these key players, Energy Indaba’s status has been elevated locally as well as globally since its inception