Our common journey towards a sustainable Africa

2020 Flagship Publication: Chapter 4

The world is now at a crossroads. The Covid-19 pandemic has resulted in a widespread health and economic crisis that has also upset long established global equilibriums. These upsets have clearly highlighted the need for us to see the world as a globally interdependent system, and the benefits of coordinated action in dealing with current and future global challenges. At a time when everything is being looked at afresh, we also have the opportunity today to choose how we want to shape the future. This could involve not just rebooting the old system, but also proactively supporting new ideas and solutions aimed at “building back better”.

We have known for some time that there is an urgent need to transform economies around sustainable, circular, innovative and inclusive principles, with renewable energies fueling them. To support Africa’s socio-economic development in such a sustainable way, electricity is also vital. Today, renewable energy technologies are the most appropriate and cost-competitive solution to electrify African societies and economies. Increasing investments in these resources will ensure that there is a secure and clean energy supply for services, industries and households, it will help to jump-start job creation, reduce CO2 emissions and foster wider technological innovation.

Seen in this context, renewAfrica is now more relevant than ever. Since its launch, its profile has continued to increase on European, African and international stages. Partly this is because it is backed by a pool of signatories coming from the worlds of finance, manufacturing, think tanks, consulting companies, IPPs and industry associations, but also because it is looking to propose the architecture for a fully-fledged, one-stop-shop program for de-risking RE investments in Africa. renewAfrica will look to achieve its mission by committing itself to driving an enhanced partnership between forward-looking renewable energy industries, European institutions and African countries.

renewAfrica also aligns well with the existing low-carbon aspirations of European and African players, and decision-makers. Many African countries have pledged to jointly cooperate in the global fight against climate change, particularly in relation to the effects of rising temperatures which will disproportionately impact the continent. The approval of the European Green Deal and the Strategy with Africa have demonstrated the European Union’s commitment on this agenda and its ambition to partner with African countries on faster social, economic and human development. By sharing its expertise of regulating, procuring, installing and operating renewable energy technologies, the hope is that Europe can help to accelerate Africa’s own pursuit of a sustainable future.

In the fourth and final Chapter of the publication, the work-in-progress of renewAfrica is reviewed and positioned within the current journey that Europe and Africa are pursuing towards shared sustainable growth. With the establishment of stronger European and African partnerships at a political, social and economic level that can be encouraged and supported with concrete activities and effective exchange of knowledge, the next decade could really begin to deliver true shared impact, putting people, their needs and their ambitions at the center of all actions and activities. renewAfrica hopes to play a key role in this transformational process for both the EU and Africa by stimulating Africa’s sustainable energy revolution. The road may be long and not fully known, but the journey is always more enjoyable and easier with friends. We look forward to welcoming you on board!