AfDB’s new African energy policy approved to replace 1985, 1994 documents

The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group’s focus on Africa’s energy sector has a new direction as its new energy policy gets approval form its Board of Directors.

Officials of the Bank say the new energy policy supersedes the 1994 Bank Group Energy Sector Policy and the 1985 Framework for Public Utility Tariff Policy previously applied to electric power, telecommunications, water supply and sanitation operations.

According to a statement issued by the AfDB November 23, 2012, the Board of Directors approved the policy on September 26, 2012 and “it is the product of broad based and transparent consultations internally within the Bank Group and externally with key stakeholders including the regional member countries (RMCs), regional economic communities (RECs), the private sector, development partners and the civil society.”

The statement said the new “Energy Sector Policy” provides a general framework that will help the bank face a dual challenge: addressing the continent’s energy needs in order to unlock its development potential while responding to energy related local and global environmental concerns, especially climate change, and sustainably reducing reliance on fossil fuels.

Sub-energy sectors in the new policy are renewable energy, hydro power, oil and gas, coal, nuclear energy and power transmission and distribution.

The Bank explains that the policy advances the objectives to support Regional Member Countries (RMCs) in their efforts to provide all of their populations and productive sectors with access to modern, affordable and reliable energy infrastructure and services; and also to assist RMCs develop their energy sector in a socially, economically and environmentally sustainable manner.

The Bank said it will help its RMCs to harness their energy resource endowments to ensure energy security and expand access to affordable and reliable energy services.

“It will adopt a demand-driven approach customized to RMCs/RECs’ specific circumstances, resource endowments and priorities, the statement added.

However, to ensure that its efforts to increase access to energy for all does not undermine its commitment to social and environmental sustainability, the AfDB indicated that it will help its clients (i) assess different energy options against their ability to achieve such objectives; and (ii) gradually adopt a sustainable low-carbon growth path, underpinned by the three levers: renewable sources, energy efficiency and clean technologies.

The AfDB states that it will also develop medium-term energy strategies proposing result-oriented operational action plans to effectively deliver on the new policy.

The Bank will ensure mainstreaming of the energy dimension in its policies, strategies and operations and also step up its efforts to mobilize resources, invest in the development of staff skills, and engage in strategic partnerships, it added.

By Ekow Quandzie

1 Comment
  1. Asfaha Tesfai says

    What is AfDB doing to promote private and also foreign investment in the energy sector. It needs to advise the governments to introduce Laws and regulations to encourage such investments. The investment required is so huge governments can’t finance the investments. Governments should focus on areas where private investors are not likely to invest such as roads, schools and healthcare.

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