Agreement signed with President Obama’s Power Africa initiative

'1.3 billion people do not have access to electricity. Mobilising the capital needed to provide access to modern energy requires close cooperation between a wide range of actors. The MoU between Norway and Power Africa will make it easier for Norwegian investors to develop energy projects in Africa,' said Minister of Foreign Affairs Børge Brende.

Foreign Minister Børge Brende signs the agreement with Power Africa, Eric Postel (right) . Photo: V.L. Salvesen, MFA
Foreign Minister Børge Brende signs the agreement with Power Africa, Eric Postel (right) . Credit: V.L. Salvesen, MFA

Mr Brende signed the MoU during COP21, the climate summit in Paris. President Obama launched Power Africa – a partnership between the US, various African governments, the private sector, international organisations, NGOs, and other donors – in 2013. The aim is to add 30 000 megawatts (MW) of power generation capacity, and provide access to electricity for 60 million households in sub-Saharan Africa. So far, more than 100 actors, both public and private, have joined the partnership.

'The huge need for investment in the energy sector makes it necessary to use aid strategically to trigger commercial and private investments. The MoU with Power Africa will strengthen Norway's renewable energy efforts and help to ensure closer coordination and cooperation in this field,' said Mr Brende.

Norfund (the Norwegian Investment Fund for Developing Countries) will have a key role to play in Norway's efforts under the initiative. Norfund aims to promote investments that will bring 300 MW online a year.

Under the MoU, Norway will cooperate on measures to increase access to electricity in sub-Saharan Africa with particular focus on investments in renewable energy, small-scale solutions, hydropower development, regional cooperation and the integration of gender considerations into the energy sector.