Accra, the capital of Ghana, is hosting a regional workshop to validate the study on the update of the ECOWAS energy policy from September 7 to 9, 2022. This workshop, which is part of the program “Improvement of Governance of the Energy Sector in West Africa (AGoSE-AO)” aims to take stock of the vision, strategic objectives and implementation of the updated ECOWAS Energy Policy and finally to validate it.
As the current energy policy of ECOWAS is 40 years old since it dates from 1982, the ECOWAS Commission has deemed it necessary to provide the region with a new policy due to the evolving context of the energy transition and other major challenges to raise in the future.
It is within this framework that with the support of the European Union, the Regional Program for the Improvement of Governance of the Energy Sector implemented by ECOWAS has provided for a section relating to the revision of the said policy. . The firm NTU International was selected to carry out this work, one of the deliverables of which is at the heart of the discussions at this meeting. The Accra workshop takes place following a participatory process around five (5) sessions.
This workshop is attended by representatives of ECOWAS Member States, the European Union, the ECOWAS Directorate of Energy and Mines as well as specialized ECOWAS agencies in charge of energy (ERERA, WAPP and ECREEE), national energy structures and some regional institutions. The official ceremony to launch the activities of this workshop was marked by several speeches.
After thanking the Government of Ghana for hosting this meeting and the European Union for its support in the implementation of this activity, Commissioner Sédiko DOUKA in charge of Infrastructure, Energy and Digitalization of the ECOWAS mainly returned, during his speech, to the expected results of this workshop in his own words: “the expected results of this important study will undoubtedly contribute to the achievement of the objectives of the Sustainable Energy Initiative for the entire United Nations, a strong commitment of ECOWAS Member States, at the international level. He also added that the updated energy policy of ECOWAS will make it possible to define, among other things, the best energy mix for the region, the need to ensure universal access to modern energy services under the best conditions of quality and sustainability and at the lowest cost.
This ceremony also saw the intervention by videoconference of Ms Anastasia Oikonomou, Representative of the European Union. She was quick to point out that the updated ECOWAS energy policy is a long-awaited dream under AGoSE, the $32 million EU-funded technical assistance program for sector governance. energy in West Africa.
According to her, once adopted, the updated ECOWAS energy policy will be key to boosting energy investments in the region. It will also serve to position West Africa as the first single electricity market on the continent.
In his official opening remarks for this workshop, the Honorable Andrew MERCER, the Deputy Minister of Energy of Ghana recalled the importance of the energy sector in stimulating sustainable development, attracting investments and creating jobs in the countries of the West African sub-region. After calling on technical and financial partners to strengthen their support for the energy sector in the ECOWAS region, the Deputy Minister concluded his speech with a message of hope: “I am convinced that the development and implementation implementation of the updated ECOWAS Energy Policy will streamline existing initiatives and spark new innovative projects to promote reliable, cost-effective and environmentally friendly energy supply”.
It should be recalled that the program “Improvement of Governance of the Energy Sector in West Africa (AGoSE-AO)” designed within the framework of cooperation with the Commission of the European Union (EU) in the framework of the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) aims to lay the foundations for West African States to achieve the three objectives of the United Nations “Sustainable Energy for All” initiative (SE4All Initiative) at the 2030 horizon which are: (i) ensuring universal access to modern and clean energy services; (ii) doubling the share of renewable energies in the overall energy mix; and (iii) doubling the overall rate of improvement in energy efficiency.
The AGoSE-WA program is implemented by ECOWAS with technical assistance from NTU International through a team of consultants.