Nairobi, 22nd January 2020 – RES4Africa Foundation, on request of the Embassy of Italy in Nairobi, holds a business-to-government (B2G) workshop at Strathmore University in Nairobi, Kenya, titled “Renewable Energy in Kenya: Unlocking Investments, Innovation and Research”. The event gathers 250 representatives of the private sector, academia, international organizations, Kenyan public institutions and Italian companies to discuss the lessons learned and cutting edge innovation in the renewable energy sector in Kenya and Africa.
Kenya is one of the fastest growing countries in East Africa; blessed with abundant resources in the form of solar, wind and geothermal energy, exploiting these efficiently will be key to unleashing economic growth. Kenya has already made notable progress in deploying renewables mainly because of its power to successfully attract private investment for renewable projects. According to the IEA, Kenya has seen one of the fastest increases in electrification rates within Sub-Saharan Africa in recent years, and 75% of the population had access to electricity in 2018. Moreover, being one of the few sub-Saharan countries to develop geothermal energy, it is estimated that by 2040 it will account for almost 50% of Kenya’s power generation in Stated Policies Scenario (STEPS). In order to provide access to energy to the whole population, concerted policy action could help Kenya in reaching this goal through grid and stand alone connections as well as other applications, and so help meet the demand growth.
The unlocking investments, innovation and research in the renewable energy sector in Kenya is at the centre of the high-level and intense discussion between the public and private sector during the workshop. High institutional presence is represented by Alberto Pieri, Italian Ambassador in Kenya, and by Charles Keter, State Minister of Energy. On the other hand, the private and banking sectors are represented by actors such as Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA), Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM), Enel Green Power, the European Investment Bank (EIB) and Intesa Sanpaolo. Local stakeholders also include representatives of the Ministry of Energy, as well as national energy companies such as Kenya Power, KenGen and Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Agency (EPRA).
“Already four years have gone by since RES4Africa launched the Kenya programme, and it is incredible to notice the remarkable progress the country has undertaken to unlock its renewable energy potential. We’ve witnessed the fruitful efforts that have been made since our last visit in 2018, in order to attact private investments for renewable projects” states Roberto Vigotti, RES4Africa Foundation Secretary General, “Today, we are delighted to participate in this discussion with leading institutions, which demonstrates the strong relationship tying Kenyan and Italian expertise in the deployment of renewables, innovation and research”.