African Development Bank has launched the continent’s energy sector resource centre dubbed Africa Energy Portal (AEP).
Unveiled at the recent Africa Investment Forum in South Africa, the platform is expected build a knowledge base to de-risk the energy sector in Africa.
The initiative is bringing together investors, policy makers and government officials to consolidate, validate, and disseminate energy data and insights across Africa’s energy value chain, covering generation, transmission, distribution, regulation and policy through a portal.
According to African Development Bank the AEP is designed to address a lack of information in the sector, by providing a one-stop-shop for accurate, reliable, relevant, and up-to-date information on energy in Africa.
The bank said AEP data will include statistics on investment flows and deals, as well as the socio-economic outcomes of power projects.
“Many international and local stakeholders have experienced the data access and reliability challenges that hold back substantive participation in the numerous opportunities within Africa’s energy sector.
“The AEP is strategically positioned to resolve these challenges, by providing stakeholders with the requisite information to facilitate decision making, and fast track investments and initiatives that will revolutionise Africa’s energy sector,” said Amadou Hott, Vice President of Power, Energy, Climate Change and Green Growth at the African Development Bank.
In addition to being an information repository, the AEP is also expected to provide an interactive platform for knowledge-sharing amongst Africa’s energy sector stakeholders and experts.
Hott said AEP will serve as a virtual space for engagement, and progressive dialogue on pertinent issues affecting the development of the continent’s energy and power infrastructure.
Wale Shonibare, Director of Energy Financial Solutions, Policy and Regulation at the African Development Bank lauded the AEP as a long-overdue, but necessary, step in “providing critical information for investment decisions, policy making, and regulatory action in Africa’s energy sector.”
Reinforcing the need for partnerships, Shonibare welcomed collaboration from external stakeholders.
“We are aware that the portal’s success will depend on extensive collaboration, and we invite professionals, developers, investors, regulators, governments, financial institutions, statisticians, utility companies, think tanks, philanthropic institutions and other stakeholders to work with us in creating a robust and formidable platform for the continent,” he said.
Uganda’s Minister for Energy and Minerals Hon.Irene Muloni praised the initiative as one that would enable countries to make better, and informed policy decisions.