Validation workshop on the updated ECOWAS Energy Policy09 Sep, 2022
Accra, the capital of Ghana is hosting a regional validation workshop on the updated ECOWAS Energy Policy, from 7 to 9 September 2022. The workshop, which is part of the programme ” Improved Governance of the Energy Sector in West Africa (AGoSE-AO)”, aims to review the vision, strategic objectives and implementation plan of the updated ECOWAS Energy Policy and subsequently to validate the document.
With the current ECOWAS Energy Policy being 40 years old as it dates back to 1982, the ECOWAS Commission deemed it necessary to provide the region with a new policy due to the evolving context of energy transition and other major challenges to be addressed in the region.
In this context and with the support of the European Union, the Regional Programme for Improved Governance of the Energy Sector implemented by ECOWAS, has included a component on the revision of the said policy. NTU International has been selected to carry out the review, one of the deliverables of which is at the heart of discussions at this meeting. The Accra workshop is taking place in a participatory process involving five (5) sessions.
The workshop will be attended by representatives of ECOWAS Member States, the European Union, the ECOWAS Directorate of Energy and Mines, as well as ECOWAS specialised energy agencies (ERERA, WAPP and ECREEE), national energy agencies and some regional institutions. The official opening ceremony of the workshop featured several statements.
After thanking the Government of Ghana for hosting the meeting and the European Union for its support in the implementation of this activity, Sédiko Douka, ECOWAS Commissioner for Infrastructure, Energy and Digitisation, in his speech, focused on the expected outcomes of the workshop: “The expected outcomes of this important study will undoubtedly contribute to the achievement of the objectives of the United Nations Sustainable Energy for All Initiative, a strong commitment of ECOWAS Member States at the international level. “ He also indicated that the updated ECOWAS Energy Policy will help to determine, among other things, the best energy mix for the region, the need to ensure universal access to modern energy services in the best conditions of quality and sustainability and at the lowest cost.
The ceremony also included a videoconference intervention by Mrs Anastasia Oikonomou, Representative of the European Union. She noted that the updated ECOWAS Energy Policy is a long-awaited dream within the framework of AGoSE, the US$32 million EU-funded technical assistance programme for energy sector governance in West Africa.
According to her, once adopted, the updated ECOWAS Energy Policy will be key to driving energy investments in the region. It will also serve to position West Africa as the leading Single Electricity Market on the continent.
In his official opening address to the workshop, Honourable Andrew Mercer, Ghana’s Deputy Minister for Energy, recalled the importance of the energy sector in stimulating sustainable development, attracting investment and creating jobs in the countries of the West African sub-region. After calling on technical and financial partners to strengthen their support to the energy sector in the ECOWAS region, the Deputy Minister concluded his speech with a message of hope: “I am confident that the development and implementation of the updated ECOWAS Energy Policy will streamline existing initiatives and generate new innovative projects to promote reliable, cost-effective and environmentally friendly energy supply.”
The objective of programme ” Improved Governance of the Energy Sector in West Africa (AGoSE-AO) “, developed in cooperation with the European Union (EU) Commission under the 11th European Development Fund (EDF), is to lay the foundations for West African States to achieve the three core targets of the 2030 United Nations Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) initiative, namely to (i) ensure universal access to modern and clean energy services; (ii) Increase substantially the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix; and (iii) double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency .
The AGoSE-AO programme is being implemented by ECOWAS with technical assistance from NTU International through a team of consultants.