Energy experts launch Global Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centers to promote inclusive and sustainable energy industries in ACP countries

Praia, Cape Verde – The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in close cooperation with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and financial support of the Austrian Development Cooperation (ADC) organized a study tour for senior energy experts to the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE).

The study tour took place at the background of the formation of regional sustainable energy centers in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific. The centers respond to the urgent need for enforced regional capacities to mitigate existing barriers for renewable energy and energy efficiency industries and markets in developing and transition countries. The centers complement and strengthen ongoing national activities in the areas of policy and capacity development, knowledge management and awareness raising, as well as investment and business promotion.

The study tour facilitated the participation of experts from the Southern African Development Community (SADC), the East African Community (EAC), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) and the Caribbean Community Climate Change Centre (CCCCC). The participating experts were introduced into the achievements, flag-ship programs and lessons learned of ECREEE in West Africa and the Regional Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (RCREEE) in the Arab region. Both centers are operating since 2010.

The event highlighted also the added value of south-south cooperation between the regional centers. UNIDO was requested to establish an umbrella platform to facilitate knowledge exchange and common activities between the centers. It was agreed that the “Global Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centers” platform will be co-chaired by UNIDO and ECREEE. The first meeting of the global network was scheduled to take place at the Vienna Energy Forum (VEF) in June 2015.

In his welcome speech, H.E. Humberto Brito, Minister of Energy in Cape Verde, reconfirmed the goal of the country to achieve 100% penetration of renewable energy in the electricity sector.

Mr. Mahama Kappiah, Executive Director of ECREEE, commended the efforts of UNIDO and other regional economic communities to replicate the model of West Africa. “The network of regional centers will form a strong sustainable energy voice of ACP countries on international levels”, he concluded.

Mr. Martin Lugmayr, UNIDO Coordinator for the global network, underlined the importance of the centers to empower the local private sector and industry to benefit from increasing sustainable energy investment and job opportunities. “The south-south multi-stakeholder partnership will create critical regional capacity to facilitate the attainment of the Sustainable Energy For All (SE4ALL) targety by 2030”, he said.

Observatory Country:

Cape Verde