PORT LOUIS, Mauritius, June 22, 2018/APO Group/ --

The 20th Africa Energy Forum concludes today in Mauritius after four days of panel discussions and networking functions focused on Africa’s Energy Sector. Over 1500 delegates attended the 20th anniversary event which took place in 26 purpose-built structures erected between the Paradis and Dinarobin Beachcomber hotels in Le Morne.

Mauritius was chosen as a location for the conference this year due to its reputation as a stable, reliable & competitive investment hub as well as for its strategic location in the Indian Ocean and impressive energy access rates.

“We really wanted to do something special this year to celebrate the Forum’s anniversary,” commented EnergyNet’s Head of Marketing, Amy Offord.  “The theme for 2018 is reflecting on the achievements within the industry over the last 20 years, putting the energy community into the spotlight and acknowledging their on-going determination to drive the sector forward.”

Several announcements from the sector took place at the event. These included the launch of the Electricity Regulatory Index (ERI) by the African Development Bank, which measures the level of development of an African country’s electricity regulatory sector. IFC signed a $34 Million Financing Agreement with Enel, IDC and EIB for the construction of 34 MW Ngonye solar plant in Zambia as part of their IFC/World Bank Scaling Solar Initiative. Globeleq signed a joint development agreement with Mozambique’s EDM to progress the 400 MW gas-fired power project located at Temane in Inhambane Province. ENGIE announced plans to continue expanding their solar home system (SHS) and mini-grid activities, and renewable energy producer Alcazar Energy announced the first roll-out of vocational training as part of a community development initiative.

David Bhoyroo is responsible for organising group incentives for the Beachcomber resort and has been the main point of contact for organisers EnergyNet. “It's been exciting - very different to what usually do. We didn’t have a tent like that in Mauritius. When we were approached by EnergyNet we didn’t really know what to expect. This is the biggest event ever hosted here.”

EnergyNet’s Head of Operations Verena Lester says it has been a challenging journey; “The site covers roughly 5,000 square metres and the whole process took just over a year- our first site visit to Mauritius was in April 2017. It’s been an amazing adventure for us – we had so many questions and the Beachcomber had to supply many of the answers. Those answers were never 'no' – they always found solutions. It’s really critical to have partnership like this for such a large project. With the two Beachcomber hotels exclusively reserved for delegates, everyone in the hotel was involved in the event, and that’s exciting.”

Read more: 20th anniversary of Africa Energy Forum...

BUSAN, Republic of Korea, May 24, 2018/APO Group/ --

On the sidelines of the African Development Bank (www.AfDB.org) Annual Meetings in Busan, Korea, the Fund for African Private Sector Assistance (FAPA) (https://goo.gl/bkP5Bm) donors and the African Fertilizer and Agribusiness Partnership (AFAP) have signed a grant agreement in support of local supply and utilization of fertilizer by smallholder farmers in Africa.

This FAPA grant of US $1 million will help increase affordability, accessibility and incentives for fertilizer use among smallholder farmers in Africa and expand the supply and distribution of fertilizer by leveraging investments. It is also intended to create over 1,000 jobs for women and youth. AFAP, the grantee, will match the FAPA grant.

The agreement was signed Wednesday by Jennifer Blanke, the African Development Bank’s Vice-President for Agriculture, Human and Social Development, and Jason Scarpone, CEO of the African Fertilizer and Agribusiness Partnership.

“This project is very much in line with the Feed Africa strategy of the African Development Bank.  It will promote  greater local supply of fertilizer to farmers thereby increasing productivity, which is central to the transformation of value chains,” Blanke said.

This initiative complements the Bank’s strategy for transforming agriculture value chains in Regional Member Countries and strengthening private enterprises. It also helps improve access to finance for blending companies and joint ventures in the agriculture sector. It will enhance distribution through agriculture input systems with agro-dealer networks in the targeted countries: Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, Mozambique and Tanzania.

“Agriculture is one of the five priority areas of the Bank.  In Sub-Saharan Africa, 60% of the population lives in rural areas, while the proportion of agriculture in GDP is less than 20%,” said Soichiro Imaeda, Parliamentary Vice Minister for Finance in Japan, one of donors to FAPA. 

“Improving agricultural productivity is an urgent issue in achieving sustainable economic growth in Africa. We hope that this project will be effectively utilized and that farmers’ access to fertilizer will expand and agricultural productivity will increase in the five target African countries including Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Mozambique, Nigeria and Tanzania.”

“Today’s grant agreement is not just about improving the productivity of smallholder farmers in Africa; it also encourages  local supply and utilization of fertilizer in Africa. We’ll continue, through FAPA, to support agriculture finance projects in Africa,” Olivier Eweck, Director of the Syndication, Co-financing and Technical Solutions Department at the Bank, and Chair of the FAPA Technical Committee, said Wednesday.

Read more: Fund for African Private Sector Assistance...

Africa Innovation Summit top innovators moving ahead after the successful summit of Kigali: Simbarashe Mhuriro shortlisted for the “Innovator of the Year” Award Simbarashe is the founder and Managing Director of Oxygen Africa, a Zimbabwean renewable energy development company KIGALI, Rwanda, July 10, 2018/APO Group/ -- Simbarashe Mhuriro, Founder & CEO of Oxygen Energy Commercial Rooftop Solar Solutions has been shortlisted by CNBC Africa and All Africa Buisness Leaders Awards partners for the Innovator of the Year category in the 8th All Africa Business Leader Awards in partnership with CNBC Africa (AABLA™) (http://aablawards.com). About Simbarashe Mhuriro
Simbarashe is the founder and Managing Director of Oxygen Africa, a Zimbabwean renewable energy development company focused on commercial and industrial rooftop solar photovoltaic projects, as well as a second with Minerva Risk Advisors, a leading provider of risk management services, insurance and reinsurance brokerage and employee benefits consulting in Zimbabwe. In 2016, Simba was named as one of Africa’s 30 most promising and inspirational young entrepreneurs in Africa by Forbes Magazine and also recognised by the Africa Youth Awards as one of 100 most Influential Young Africans of the year. Afk Insider magazine named him among 12 Most Promising African Entrepreneurs of 2016 whilst in 2017 Africa.com named him among 40 Africans Under 40 – Making It In Africa. Distributed by APO Group on behalf of Africa Innovation Summit.

About the Africa Innovation Summit

The AIS (www.AfricaInnovationSummit.com) is an Africa-wide and home grown initiative aimed at harnessing the innovation potential of the continent. It aims to mobilize the people and, especially those with the ‘power to act’, including investors, the people with the ideas, the policy makers, the researchers and academics, the business community, the youth, as well as innovators and thinkers into a coalition for collective action to promote and build an enabling environment for innovation in Africa. The goal is to engage as many people as possible in order to build a broad constituency in support of innovation in Africa.

The AIS platform includes regular Summits to promote dialogue, facilitate exchange of best practices among stakeholders and African countries, showcase what is happening on the continent, and share lessons of experience. The platform also includes engaging with African researchers and scholars to undertake case studies to tease out lessons of experience in order to facilitate learning by stakeholders. The African Innovation Exhibit which is also part of the AIS provides a stage to showcase home-grown innovations and innovators on the continent, while the Hackathons will challenge the people to come up with solutions to specific problems. 

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Read more: Africa Innovation Summit top innovators moving...

SãO TOMé AND PRíNCIPE, Africa, June 5, 2018/APO Group/ --

The first President of the African Development Bank (www.AfDB.org) group to set foot on São Tomé and Príncipe, Akinwumi Adesina has arrived in the country for a five-day official visit to strengthen alliances between his institution and this lower middle-income island nation with a fragile economy.

He was welcomed by Américo dos Ramos, the Minister of Finance, Trade and Blue Economy, who is also the country’s Governor at the African Development Bank, and by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Urbino Botelho.

To help promote a competitive financial sector, the President of the African Development Bank launched the Payment System Infrastructure and Financial Inclusion Project (SPAUT) on Monday. The project – financed by a US $2.16-million loan from the African Development Fund, $299,000 from the World Bank and €345,600 from the Portuguese Trust Fund – aims to expand financial inclusion on the island.

“The payment system project launched today will have considerable development impact for São Tomé. An upgraded payment system infrastructure allows for and promotes interconnectivity with international credit cards such as Visa and MasterCard,” Adesina said.

“This, in turn, will help the country to position itself for what could be a genuine gold rush in the form of the tourist trade, as well as the longer term and more sustainable benefits of increasing regional and international trade, vital for island economies. It will also enhance private-sector growth through easier financial management conditions for enterprises, especially small and medium-sized enterprises.”

Américo Dos Ramos welcomed the completion of this long overdue project. “We must meet the demands of our dynamic and ever-growing economy and our transformation agenda requires improvement of our financial platform to facilitate national and international financial transactions,” he said.

Earlier, the African Development Bank President and his delegation held a meeting with the Prime Minister, Patrice Emery Trovoada, the Governor of the Central Bank of São Tomé, Hélio Silva Almeida, and the Ministers of Finance, Infrastructure, Agriculture and Education. A meeting with the Head of State of São Tomé, Evaristo Carvalho, is also planned.

“Despite the many achievements of the government, we continue to face challenges in this country,” the Prime Minister said. According to him, improvement of airport infrastructure, which has allowed for an increase in the number of tourists, and port management are the key pillars of economic development.

Adesina commended the Government for its continued commitment to the implementation of macroeconomic and structural reforms to ensure stability and growth. “This country is beautiful and blessed. There is no reason for poverty to persist here,” he declared. Priority areas are job creation, especially among young people and women for inclusive growth, he said. Adesina also expressed the Bank’s willingness to help São Tomé and Príncipe to develop a blue economy strategy.

“We believe in the economy and the future of this country,” he said.

During roundtables with donors, bankers and the private sector, the Bank President invited the various stakeholders to the Africa Investment Forum (AIF) (www.AfricaInvestmentForum.com) to be held from November 7-9, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Adesina is expected to visit two sites financed by the African Development Bank that have made significant contributions to the development of the rural sector. They include the Agronomic and Technological Research Center (CIAT), responsible for the protection and control of food products and the conservation of seeds, and the agro-pastoral technical improvement centre (CATAP). Both centres have been rehabilitated and equipped by the Bank.

Adesina will also visit Agripalma, a concession covering almost 5,000 hectares, located south of the island and intended for industrial oil palm plantations. More than 2,200 hectares of palm groves have been planted. A factory – currently under construction – will produce its first yield in 2018.

On the last day of his official visit, Adesina will visit Príncipe Island and meet with the President of Regional Government, José Cassandra.

The Bank Group commenced lending operations in São Tomé and Príncipe in 1978. São Tomé and Príncipe hosted one of the Bank’s first National Program Offices opened in 1995. To date, the country has benefited from cumulative financing of US $195.20 million since 1978. Assistance has expanded to several key sectors of the economy, including agriculture, structural adjustment programs, energy, transport, roads, telecommunications, water and sanitation, governance, financial sector and private sector development.

There are six ongoing operations valued at US $35.38 million. Public-sector projects account for 100% of the total portfolio, as there are no private-sector operations or multinational projects. The share of the active portfolio by sector is as follows: agriculture, 57%; and multi-sector and finance, 37% and 6%, respectively.

Read more: African Development Bank President in São Tomé...

ABUJA, Nigeria, July 10, 2018/APO Group/ --

As far back as 1890, Nigerians got exports of stock fish from Norway. This expanded to other sectors including shipping, ship building, oil and gas, renewable energy, making Nigeria Norway’s most important economic partner in Africa. The Norwegian Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Jens-Petter Kjemprud, in this interview, outlines potentials for further cooperation between the two friendly countries.

Daily Trust: How would you assess relations between Nigeria and Norway?

Ambassador Jens-Petter Kjemprud: I would describe it as very good. We opened an embassy in Nigeria at independence, but already had long trade relations dating back to the 1890s predominantly through stock fish exports. Trade, shipping, ship building, oil and gas, renewable energy are the main economic sectors, making Nigeria Norway’s most important economic partner in Africa with potentials for further growth. Political relations have become much closer in the past years with frequent meetings at political level and political visits both ways. The annual Nordic African foreign ministers meeting held once in Oslo and once in Abuja within the past three years is a good arena to discuss issues of common concern and the annual Nordic African Business Summit held every November in Oslo is an arena to develop further economic cooperation. We are also in the process of developing a bilateral political consultation mechanism and for two years now have had a very proactive Nigerian-Norwegian Chamber of Commerce based in Lagos.

DT: Norway hosted the humanitarian conference on Nigeria and the Lake Chad region. How would you assess the outcome?

Amb. Kjemprud: We are quite happy with the outcome. The two main ambitions of the conference which we hosted with the UN, Germany and the Nigerian government was to broaden international attention on the humanitarian needs in the Lake Chad region and secure solid funding to respond to the needs. Both ambitions were achieved. We are now in the process of planning for “Oslo 2” conference in cooperation with the UN and Germany, to be held in Berlin. We follow closely the government’s efforts to alleviate the humanitarian crisis which affects up to seven million people and urge the Nigerian government to cooperate fully in preparation for the new conference. Such a conference should go beyond the humanitarian funding to bridge the gap towards development, peace and stability and supplement necessary peace initiatives for the Northeast. There is no military or humanitarian solution alone.

DT: Have other projects been initiated since then?

Amb. Kjemprud: The government, UN, national and international NGOs have all responded to the humanitarian crisis, specifically the Northeast of Nigeria and Borno State in particular, as this is the epicenter of the conflict and the humanitarian crisis. The UN in particular has strengthened its  presence but the pledges and commitments to the humanitarian response plan for 2018 is relatively weak, hence the need for “Oslo 2”. Norway upgraded its response through the UN, national and international NGOs in 2017 to approximately $35m. The Norwegian Refugee Council has also established a solid presence to support refugees and internally displaced persons.

DT: Having been in Nigeria for some time, how will you describe your stay?

Amb. Kjemprud: I am enjoying my stay, coming to two years, very much. Nigeria has a deep reservoir of brilliant, well educated, innovative and bright people, many of whom I have had the privilege to meet. But also, as I had the opportunity to discuss when I visited the National Institute for Policy and Strategic Studies (NIPSS) in Kuru, there is a gap between all those brilliant people and the way the country is organized. That continues to puzzle me and should pose a challenge to the politicians of this great country.

DT: How is the bilateral trade tie between Nigeria and Norway?

Amb. Kjemprud: As I said, the trade volume is good, with the bulk concentrated in shipping, ship building and oil and gas sectors. I still feel there is much untapped potential and we try to promote further trade including through special efforts to remove wrong perceptions of the Nigerian market. There is still an inclination among many business people not to engage in the Nigerian market because of the bad reputation. We thus support the Buhari government’s fight against corruption and we cooperate to urge our companies to avoid corruption. We are pleased with the improvement in Nigeria’s ranking on the ease of doing business, but still see the energy sector as an important impediment to foreign investment in Nigeria. The manufacturing sector cannot be competitive without safe, cheap and stable power supply. If Nigeria succeeds in improving the fight against corruption, the ease of doing business and puts it energy sector in order, you will see a new, more prosperous Nigeria which could also respond better to the needs of the fast growing population, thereby reducing conflicts caused by competition for scarce resources. These are the issues politicians should be judged by.

DT: The Nigerian government has called on Norway to invest in the seafood sub-sector in Nigeria, do you see this working?

Amb. Kjemprud: Trade between the two countries is imbalanced in our favour indeed, mostly due to the fact that we are both oil producing countries. We do however think that this might change. Today, the surplus in trade is mostly due to Norwegian technology inputs into the Nigerian oil sector. As the Nigerian local content policy develops, we can envisage changes in the near future. The Norwegian branch of TechnipFMC recently produced manifolds for the oil sector with 80% local content and a Lagos-based company, Marine Platforms, won a local content award this year for acquiring high technology ships for Nigeria’s subsea offshore industry from Norway. As for the seafood sector we believe and have offered assistance in developing  aquaculture in Nigeria. The domestic supply only covers one-third of the demand for fish, so there is an enormous potential to develop the sector on land and at sea. Norway has the expertise as the seafood sector is our third biggest export sector. We would be happy to share our experiences. The Nigerian- Norwegian Chamber of Commerce is focusing on this and we will have a seafood/fisheries week in Lagos this October in cooperation with the Norwegian Seafood Council.

DT: You once expressed Norway’s readiness to collaborate with Nigeria on the film industry. How far has this gone?

Amb. Kjemprud: I visited the Nigerian Film Institute in Jos only last week to take this initiative further. The Nigerian film industry is a big success employing some say, over a million people directly or indirectly. It also has a strong impact on people in Nigeria and across Africa. We have agreed to participate in Nigerian film festivals and arrange a Nigerian film festival in Norway through this cooperation establishing direct contact between the two NFIs - Nigerian Film Institute (NFI) and Norwegian Film Institute (NFI).

DT: What would you want to tell Nigerians about Norway?

Amb. Kjemprud: Maybe two things: First, we have deliberately used only a small part of our oil income to fund running costs and extraordinary investments, and as a result, now have the biggest sovereign wealth fund in the world, which is established to secure the welfare of future Norwegian generations. It’s all based on the principle of saving on good days for bad days. Secondly, women’s rights and equal access to work is probably the biggest contributor to the wealth of the nation, and happiness of all people in Norway (if happiness can be measured).

Read more: Brilliance of Nigerians challenges politicians

BUSAN, Republic of Korea, May 24, 2018/APO Group/ --

Korean President Moon Jae-in has committed to sharing Korea’s technological and industrial experience with Africa and to help it compete in the 4th Industrial Revolution.

His message came at the opening ceremony of the 53rd Annual Meetings of the African Development Bank (https://AM.AfDB.org/en). “Africa is no longer the sleeping lion. Korea is happy to share its industrial experience with the continent. The theme of the Annual Meetings is appropriate for the industrial transformation of the continent, and in facilitating the sharing of experiences with Korea and other partners.” 

African Development Bank (www.AfDB.org) President Akinwumi Adesina thanked the Government of Korea for hosting the Bank’s Annual Meetings. He recalled Korea’s transformation from a poor nation 60 years ago to the 11th largest economy in the world, noting the contribution of industrialization to its transformation. “Today, Samsung and LG television and phones dominate globally, while Korean cars are everywhere. Korea was deliberate and consistent in its industrial drive like China and Japan. Africa must learn from Korea’s industrialization and the equally remarkable experiences of China, Japan, and other parts of the world.”

“Africa must fast-track industrialization. That is why the African Development Bank plans to invest US $35 billion over the next 10 years in its focus on industrialization. The Bank’s industrialization strategy hopes to help Africa raise its industrial GDP from a little over US $700 billion today to over US $1.72 trillion by 2030. This will allow Africa’s GDP to rise to over US $5.6 trillion, while moving GDP per capita to over US $3,350.

“The formula for the wealth of nations is clear: rich nations add value to all they produce; poor nations simply export raw materials. Africa needs to industrialize and add value to everything that it produces – from agriculture, to minerals, to oil, gas and metals. Africa needs to move from the bottom to the top of the global value chains.”

Young Africans can transform the continent given the chance. He described the experience of Clarisse Iribagiza, a young Rwandan woman who earned a master’s in Information and Communications Technology from the Kigali Institute of Science and Technology, a program supported by the Bank. With a modest contribution from the Government of Rwanda, Clarisse launched an ICT business that she recently sold for US $10 million. She is now a member of the Bank’s Presidential Youth Advisory Council.

To unlock Africa’s potential through investment, the Bank has created the Africa Investment Forum (www.AfricaInvestmentForum.com), a transactional platform created by the African Development Bank with its partners to leverage global pension funds and sovereign wealth funds and other institutional investors to significantly invest in Africa. This new investment marketplace will set sail from November 7-9, 2018 from Johannesburg, South Africa.

Dong Yeon Kim, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Strategy and Finance of the Republic of Korea, said a new approach was urgently needed. He referred to Uncle Tom’s Cabin, a 19th-century American novel written by Harriet Beecher Stowe that envisioned a promising future for Africa. 

“Harriet Stowe was right. Very surprisingly, we now witness strong evidence of Africa flourishing, just as she predicted. Growth in the region over the past 20 years was 3% higher than the previous period, and the absolute poverty ratio decreased to two thirds of what it was two decades ago.” 

Kim stressed the need for innovative industrialization to translate Africa’s potential into economic prosperity.

“Industrialization policy should take into account the unique conditions of each country. New technologies can provide leapfrogging opportunities by speeding up the industrialization process and creating new value.” Smart infrastructure, he said, presents a promising area for Korea’s contribution.

“Smart infrastructure can provide a new solution to Africa’s shortage in roads, airports and harbours. It allows optimal use of resources and can even replace traditional infrastructure. Africa is already producing substantial outcomes in this area. Going forward, Korea is strongly committed to share its rich expertise and experience as Africa’s close partner.”

In his address, the Chairman of the African Union and Rwandan President, Paul Kagame noted that holding the Annual Meetings in Busan presents a unique opportunity to enforce the growth cooperation between Africa and the Republic of Korea.

“Korea has been a strong and reliable partner of Africa. Africa faces challenges that we can address together,” he said.

Photo gallery: https://goo.gl/bQLNzU

Read more: Korea ready to share its technological and...

BUSAN, Republic of Korea, May 25, 2018/APO Group/ --

Scientific evidence shows that African economies are already reeling from the devastating effects of climate change, further exacerbating their development challenges. Of the 10 countries in the world that are most threatened by climate change, seven are in Africa.

Cognizant of this situation, the African Development Bank (www.AfDB.org) led the way to what may turn out to be Africa’s most decisive action to ensure that the continent is not short-changed by climate finance.

At the 53rd Annual Meetings of the Bank (https://am.AfDB.org/en), in Busan, Korea, the institution brought stakeholders together for an “open dialogue” to discuss the establishment of the Africa Financial Alliance for Climate Change (AFAC). The initiative was well received by key continental and global stakeholders who agreed with the Bank that Africa needs immediate climate change action.

“The establishment of the African Financial Alliance for Climate Change is a call for us to stand together to mobilize climate finance at scale to meet the needs in Africa,” Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank, said Friday.

The 2015 Paris Climate Agreement calls on countries to increase their ability to adapt to the adverse impacts of climate change without threatening food production, and make financial flows consistent with a pathway towards low greenhouse gas emissions and climate-resilient development.

“As Africa’s premier development financial institution, the African Development Bank is already taking action. The Bank is leading Africa’s transition to climate resilient economies,” he said. “The financing needs to meet the ambitions of the Paris Climate Agreement in Africa are enormous. The implementation of Africa’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) would require investments of at least $2.7 trillion for mitigation and another $488 billion for adaptation by 2030.”

The international community has pledged to mobilize $100 billion in climate finance per annum by 2020 to support adaptation and mitigation projects in developing countries. However, of the US $820 billion in climate finance flows for 2015 and 2016, only US $16 billion was for Africa. This represents a mere 2% of the total.

“This is why the African Development Bank is hosting this open dialogue to initiate the establishment of the African Financial Alliance for Climate Change as a call for us to stand together to mobilize climate finance at scale to meet the needs in Africa,” Adesina added. 

He noted that the Bank could not achieve the task alone, pointing out that without achieving the Paris Climate Agreement in Africa, the world will not achieve the required reductions in greenhouse gases to keep global temperatures below the required target.

The Alliance brings together Africa’s financial sector, including Ministers of Finance, Central Banks, insurance and reinsurance companies, sovereign wealth and pension funds, stock exchanges as well as global thought leaders to mobilize climate finance for Africa. It also hopes to come up with concrete proposals to mobilize both domestic and international finance for climate-resilient development in Africa.  “Together, we can create a Decarbonisation Index for Africa,” President Adesina told the meeting.

“The idea of having the Alliance is a fantastic one, because we recognize that the world is also looking to us. While Africa is not the primary cause of the climate change that we see in the word today, we are the continent where the impact is very great, and the world is not as prepared to finance us to take care of this impact. We can’t let it go because it is our people who are suffering,” said Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Chair of the Africa Risk Capacity (ARC).

“Just for you to know the impact of climate change, of all the drought that occurs in the world, 41% occurs on the African continent. We lose about 485,000 people to indoor pollution, premature deaths that could have been avoided and also the devastating impact caused by flood. I can go on and on.”

The President of the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) and Chair of the Association of African DFIs, Patrick Dlamini, observed that collaboration was crucial to catalyzing funds and making a difference. “This is possible under the leadership of the African Development Bank. We can then play our role as development finance institutions to being the policy instruments of our various Governments and in alliance with partners.”

The CEO of the Global Environment Facility (GEF), Naoko Ishii, pledged the support of her organization for the Alliance and was optimistic that it would motivate the GEF to do much more for Africa.

For his part, Howard Bamsey, CEO of Green Climate Fund, said, “The Alliance is a fundamental step towards meeting the climate change challenge in Africa. There has to be an African solution to the challenge that we face and this initiative presents the opportunity to mobilize that.”

The Africa Financial Alliance for Climate Change will be launched on the margins of the Africa Investment Forum (www.AfricaInvestmentForum.com) in South Africa, November 7 to 9, 2018 and will bring together heads of financial institutions.  

Read more: African Development Bank takes landmark lead on...

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, July 4, 2018/APO Group/ --
  • The scalable micro grid system powered by a Hybrid Distributed Power unit will provide reliable, sustainable power to 1,500 inhabitants of Digo Village.
  • GE’s Hybrid Distributed Power combines PV solar panels, batteries, and a diesel generator to provide reliable, cost effective power to off the grid communities.    
  • The unit uses GE’s Predix platform, designed for digital Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), to maximize the use of clean solar power and batteries.

General Electric (GE) (www.GE.com), the world’s premier Digital Industrial Company, has commissioned a scalable micro grid system powered by a Hybrid Distributed Power unit for Digo Village in the Oromia region of Ethiopia.  The system which was implemented in partnership with Ethiopia’s Ministry of Water, Irrigation and Electricity, the Oromia Region Energy bureau as well as Ethiopian Electric Utility (EEU) will provide reliable, cost effective power to 1,500 inhabitants of Digo providing critical power to a health clinic, school, administrative offices and homes.   

The commissioning is consistent with Ethiopia’s National Electrification Program – Implementation Road Map (NEP-IRM) which seeks for a coordinated off-grid implementation program plan, designed for accelerated scale-up of mini grid solutions in rural and deep rural areas. According to Dr. Eng. Sileshi Bekele, Ethiopia’s Minister of Water, Irrigation and Electricity, “Electricity access is an essential pillar of economic and social development. Localized solutions such as the Hybrid Distributed Power unit provided by GE will be part of the solution to electrify Ethiopia going forward”. 

GE’s Hybrid Distributed Power combines PV solar panels, batteries, and a diesel generator to provide reliable, cost effective power to a mini-grid system.  GE’s Predix platform, designed for digital Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), maximizes the use of clean solar power and batteries for the unit while a variable speed diesel generator provides essential backup when battery power is insufficient.  The entire system is containerized inside a standard shipping container that can be efficiently and speedily installed.  GE partnered with a local entity, http://SolarTechPlc.com, in the installation and commissioning of the system.  

The Digo village Hybrid power system is GEs third installation in Ethiopia.  In 2017, GE funded two similar units at Health Centers in Guba and Ashoka in Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples' Region (SNNPR) region. “Electrification of Digo is a continuation of the impactful contribution that GE Is making in Ethiopia, while playing a central role in the implementation of Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP) priority projects,” said Daniel Hailu, Chief Executive Officer of GE in Ethiopia.

The Hybrid Distributed Power unit was funded by GE Renewable Energy’s “We Share the Power” program which brings power to remote, off grid areas of the world through efficiency savings at GE Renewable Energy’s manufacturing sites around the world. The project was also supported by GE Licensing, which works with partners around the world to bring GE’s containerized hybrid power island to remote areas of the world requiring off-grid distributed power solutions to meet their energy needs. 

GE businesses have been active in the Ethiopia market for over 20 years. The project execution in Ethiopia was led by the GE Hydro team in charge of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam Project, where GE supplies 5 units of 400MW.  An integrated GE Ethiopia office was inaugurated in 2017 as a commitment towards long-term partnership in Ethiopia. The company continues to be a key partner for Africa with over 2600 employees in 33 countries. GE recently achieved its 100th power plant (https://goo.gl/HjYE34) milestone in Sub-Saharan Africa across renewables, gas and steam plants generating over 46GW of power.

Read more: GE Commissions Hybrid Distributed Power Unit for...

BUSAN, Republic of Korea, May 24, 2018/APO Group/ --

The African Development Bank (www.AfDB.org) is delivering on its goals and making good progress towards achieving its development and operational targets according to the 2018 Annual Development Effectiveness Review (ADER) (https://goo.gl/LQoJUJ), which was released at the Bank’s Annual Meetings in Busan, Republic of Korea.

Every year, ADER scrutinizes the Bank’s operational effectiveness and its organizational efficiency, using the Bank’s results measurement framework for 2016-2025. It brings together evidence of strengths and weaknesses to provide management with a clear understanding of what has worked well and what the Bank must do better to achieve its High 5 development goals.

“The report shows that the African Development Bank is delivering on its commitment to help Africa achieve the Bank’s High 5 priorities,” said Charles Boamah, Senior Vice-President. “The Bank continues to strengthen its effectiveness as an organization, while scaling up its operations.”

This year’s ADER has a special focus on industrializing Africa. “There are good reasons to be optimistic that industrialization is achievable in the coming years. Africa is open for business, with stable economies and supportive business environments,” said Bank President, Akinwumi Adesina. “It has a young and growing workforce that is increasingly global in outlook. Urbanization and the rise of the African middle class are opening up new consumer markets, which act as a magnet for investors.”

In 2017, companies had improved access to transport, energy, and skills, which expanded their ability to do business across the continent. The Bank contributed to these improvements: it provided 14 million people with access to transport – well above its target – while building or rehabilitating 2,500 km of roads in 2017 and also helped 210,000 small and micro businesses access finance, which benefitted 2.6 million people.

“This level of performance is promising, but we must continue driving operational delivery and impact,” said Simon Mizrahi, Bank Director for Delivery, Performance Management and Results.

The Bank is scaling up its efforts to accelerate the pace of industrialization, supported by its presence in 38 countries and by timely and quality operations. This backbone and experience position the Bank well to mobilize more resources from institutional investors around the world for industrial development.

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The African Development Bank and the Global Green Growth Institute partner to fast-track Green Growth in Africa This partnership reinforces the work of the Africa NDC Hub hosted by the African Development Bank, in accelerating climate action to transition Africa towards a low carbon and climate resilient development pathway BUSAN, Republic of Korea, May 25, 2018/APO Group/ -- The African Development Bank  (www.AfDB.org) and the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI) (www.GGGI.org) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) Friday on the sidelines of the African Development Bank Group’s Annual Meetings in Busan, (https://am.AfDB.org/en) to promote programs, projects, joint studies and research activities to accelerate green growth options for African countries. The African Development Bank and the Global Green Growth Institute will cooperate in several areas, including conducting a joint study on green growth readiness in Africa and exploring ways to align both organizations’ activities with the implementation of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs). Further, the two organizations will work together to generate synergies in areas, such as the Global Green Growth Institute’s cities programs and the African Development Bank’s initiatives on clean energy, sustainable landscapes, green cities and water and sanitation, with the ultimate goal of strengthening climate resilience in Africa. The MoU was signed by Amadou Hott, Vice-President, Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth, African Development Bank, and Hyoeun Jenny Kim, Deputy Director General and Head of Green Growth Planning and Implementation, Global Green Growth Institute. “The African Development Bank believes in building strong partnerships to accelerate Africa’s development. This MoU with the Global Green Growth Institute strengthens our cooperation for effective delivery of the High 5s (www.AfDB.org/en/the-high-5) agenda in a manner that transitions African countries towards green growth. We very much look forward to this collaboration with GGGI,” said Vice-President Amadou Hott. Deputy Director General Hyoeun Jenny Kim said, “The MoU we sign today will also support the sharing of green growth knowledge and best practices from GGGI’s Member and partner countries. We look forward to conducting joint research activities with African Development Bank in designing and developing green growth projects and programs and sharing knowledge and experience through launching joint publications and participating in and co-organizing events – all of which will help to promote green growth in Africa.” This partnership reinforces the work of the Africa NDC Hub (https://goo.gl/jxuisv) hosted by the African Development Bank, in accelerating climate action to transition Africa towards a low carbon and climate resilient development pathway. Distributed by APO Group on behalf of African Development Bank Group (AfDB).

HeeKyung Son, Communications Specialist, tel. +82 70-7117-9957, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Olivia Ndong Obiang, Principal Communication Officer, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Davinah Milenge Uwella, Principal Program Coordinator, Climate Change and Green Growth Department
tel. +225 20 26 1880, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

For more information on the 2018 Annual Meetings: https://am.AfDB.org/en 

About the African Development Bank
The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) is Africa’s premier development finance institution. It comprises three distinct entities: the African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Development Fund (ADF) and the Nigeria Trust Fund (NTF). On the ground in 44 African countries with an external office in Japan, the AfDB contributes to the economic development and the social progress of its 54 regional member states. For more information: www.AfDB.org. You can also follow the Bank on Twitter and join us on Facebook (www.Facebook.com/GGGIHQ), YouTube (www.YouTube.com/user/GGGIMedia),  Flickr (www.Flickr.com/photos/afdbgroup)  and  Instagram (https://Instagram.com/afdb_group).

About the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI)
Based in Seoul, GGGI (www.GGGI.org) is an intergovernmental organization that supports developing country governments transition to a model of economic growth that is environmentally sustainable and socially inclusive. GGGI delivers programs in 27 partner countries with technical support, capacity building, policy planning & implementation, and by helping to build a pipeline of bankable green investment projects. More on GGGI’s events, projects and publications can be found on www.GGGI.org. You can also follow GGGI on Twitter (https://Twitter.com/AfDB_Group) and join us on Facebook (https://goo.gl/DAX78J), YouTube (www.YouTube.com/user/afdbcomu) and LinkedIn (https://goo.gl/CUxPbF)

Photos: https://goo.gl/oxjeaY

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