The World Energy Council has today signed a historic agreement with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern African (COMESA) to drive regional energy integration and enhance sustainable energy access in the 21 COMESA states.
The Memorandum of Understanding cements cooperation between the Council and COMESA and will spearhead the regional energy agenda in Africa, with the aim of promoting economic growth, intra-regional trade and infrastructure development.
Key challenges identified by the Council’s members in Africa include a low level of access to modern energy, weak development of energy infrastructure, lack of financing and investment and low-level trade and energy.
Guided by the Council’s Energy Trilemma, Scenarios and World Energy Issues Monitor insights, the joint declaration includes a framework which seeks to address these issues by promoting energy trade and identify innovative business models, in addition to policy and regulatory solutions relevant to the energy transition.
Dr Christoph Frei, Secretary General, World Energy Council, said: “We are delighted to be working with COMESA on this important project to develop regional energy integration, supported by the Council’s Energy Trilemma and Issues Monitor work.
“Energy equity, security, environmental sustainability, resilience, and innovation are all essential mechanisms in advancing the regional energy integration agenda within Africa.”
This will be achieved through engagement and debate between COMESA and the Council’s national member committees, development of joint energy scenarios within the region, workshops, staff exchange programs and the rollout of priority projects.
Chileshe Mpundu Kapwepwe, Secretary-General, COMESA, commented: “We do recognise that energy is key in advancing regional competitiveness for COMESA member countries and as such Energy availability, security, sustainability, affordability and accessibility is a top priority for COMESA Member States.
“We need to double our efforts to ensure that our aspirations in this respect are attained. We are optimistic that the partnership between COMESA and the World Energy Council will help us shape the energy policy of COMESA and ultimately help spur investment in the sector.”
The Council is among the few global energy platforms that has a strong presence in Africa.