Africa’s Energy Future Targets European Investments – OpEd


The African Energy Chamber (AEC), after holding a successful conference in South Africa, is now moving to the United Kingdom. With its target to achieve all-round sustainable investment in the energy sector and support for the continent’s socioeconomic development and drive economic growth, the African Energy Chamber plans the next business gathering for potential European investment opportunities across Africa.

On January 26, the Waldorf Hilton luxury hotel in London will hold a strategic platform bringing together government officials, ministers, energy experts, actors and stakeholders in the energy sector specifically from Africa and Europe to exchange ideas, share experiences and expertise that would culminate into comprehensive energy sector policies and strategies for developing exportable energy resources for European countries.

With the current situation relating to Russia’s energy supply to many European countries, it has become necssary shifting to suitable alternatives such as developing an oil and natural gas markets in Africa. The gathering will also look at reducing barriers to entry into the sector and thus ushering a wave of opportunities for new players to participate in one of the world’s most burgeoning investment destinations.

Ahead of this meeting, the Executive Chairman of the African Energy Chamber, NJ Ayuk, reiterated that African nations must focus on developing a natural gas market to serve as the foundation of the continent’s energy industry. “Africa will be unable to meet the UN’s sustainable development goals unless we tap into all resources available, which is why we must encourage and facilitate international investment, specifically from Europe, in oil and gas in order to fairly and economically participate in the global energy transition and drive socioeconomic development throughout the continent,” he said.

The African Energy Chamber has made it a priority direction to unite governments, especially energy ministers and credible businesses to spur growth under international standard business practices and position Africa to capitalize on energy investment through strategic partnerships and trade.

With the African continent focusing its efforts on lifting 600 million people who currently lack access to reliable and affordable electricity and 900 million who lack access to affordable clean cooking solutions out of energy poverty, thus the Invest in African Energy Reception in London will provide an opportunity for investors to explore various initiatives, which include gas-to-power and renewable energy developments, as well as oil and natural gas exploration and production prospects.

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and the Russian invasion of Ukraine, demand for gas in Europe is expected to rapidly increase in the coming years, thus positioning Africa to take advantage of its immense untapped resources and become a major supplier of oil and natural gas and ensure global energy security while tackling the challenges and opportunities across the continent.

In addition, the partnership between the pan-African trade finance institutions, the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), which officially partnered with the continent’s premier energy event, African Energy Week (AEW) in 2022  in a move expected to reawaken a new era of deal-signing, local content and multi-sector expansion.

Under a mandate to make energy poverty history in Africa by 2030, the partnership will see both AEW and Afreximbank uniting the power of investment and value creation, driving stronger energy developments in 2022 and beyond. It will also attract investment from the UK to facilitate capacity building, the advocacy and financing of African companies, and the development of infrastructure in the continent’s energy sector. Advancing a bold agenda for the energy sector is key and activity and direction of the African Energy Chamber. 

Kester Kenn Klomegah

Kester Kenn Klomegah is an independent researcher and a policy consultant on African affairs in the Russian Federation and Eurasian Union. He has won media awards for highlighting economic diplomacy in the region with Africa. Currently, Klomegah is a Special Representative for Africa on the Board of the Russian Trade and Economic Development Council. He enjoys travelling and visiting historical places in Eastern and Central Europe. Klomegah is a frequent and passionate contributor to Eurasia Review.

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