The renewAfrica Initiative was presented at Photovoltafrica, the International
Congress of Renewable Energies and Energy Efficiency based in Morocco. The presentation marks a milestone for the Initiative, as it is officially presented in Africa, before an African and international audience.
The presentation took place within the “The challenges of financing renewable energy and efficiency projects in Africa: Obstacles and difficulties” panel discussion of the event promoted, among others, by the Ministry of Energy, Mines and the Environment of the Kingdom of Morocco, MASEN and ONEE. Roberto Vigotti, Secretary General of the RES4Africa Foundation, explained the difficulties that European private-sector investors face in investing in renewable energy projects in Africa and how a programme as the one promoted by the renewAfrica Initiative would facilitate such investments, thus unlocking the continent’s renewable energy potential.
Launched in June 2019 in Rome by the RES4Africa Foundation, the renewAfrica Initiative is backed by 27 stakeholders* from across the European renewable energy value chain. Its aim is to advocate for the creation of a European comprehensive programme for renewable energy investments in Africa to be promoted and owned by EU institutions: once the EU adopts a RES-supporting programme for Africa, renewAfrica will have
accomplished its mission and will dissolve itself leaving the programme entirely in the hands of the EU.
In the eyes of the renewAfrica promoters, the EU-led Programme should include and deliver end-to-end support along the entire project lifecycle for all RE technologies, infrastructure and grids, in all African countries, with a focus on utility-scale projects. This should be done via four pillars: policy dialogue, capacity building, technical
assistance and financial de-risking. This structure should thus support the creation of a sustainable pipeline of bankable RE projects and greater use of Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) models.
renewAfrica has already established a robust dialogue with African governments and institutions such as the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa and the African Union, and has been endorsed by, among others, Vera Songwe, Under-Secretary General of the United Nations and Executive Secretary of UNECA. A similar dialogue has been carried out at the European institutional level, and in a recent meeting the Initiative was
presented to Frans Timmermans, the European Commission’s Executive Vice-President for the European Green Deal, who appreciated that the Initiative is in line with the green ambitions of the European Commission and welcomed the work of renewAfrica as a positive contribution to the EU’s Comprehensive Strategy with Africa.
“Today marks a fundamental milestone for renewAfrica, an Initiative we launched a year and a half ago and that continues to be positively received wherever we present it” comments Roberto Vigotti, “In 2021, we aim to present renewAfrica across the African continent, to gain the consensus needed to push it forward but especially to receive
in-depth feedback from African stakeholders, as this Initiative is a perfect example of Africa-Europe cooperation: we want to promote an initiative that benefits equally both Europe and Africa”.