Speaking at the 14th German-African Energy Forum in Accra on Tuesday, June 1, 2021, Ghana’s Energy Minister, Matthew Opoku-Prempeh, said transitioning from reliance on fossil fuels to renewable energy involves a considerable investment, requiring the partnership of pro-climate change actors.
“The continent is endowed with good conventional and renewable energy sources which I believe if properly harnessed will help us to sustainably meet the energy demands and respond to the climate change debate,” the Minister said.
“Recently, we amended our Renewable Energy Act with the sole aim of facilitating investments in our renewable energy sector,” he declared.
Highlighting the place of reliable energy in the social and economic development of African countries, the Minister said energy is so critical and directly linked to the development factors, including the SDGs, that energy transition -- which is the move from reliance on fossil energy to renewable energy -- may present a challenge for less endowed countries.
“To accelerate economic growth in these COVID times, we need to start thinking differently and employing unconventional strategies and smart investments in the productive sectors of our economies. Failure to do so will hamper our economic and social growth and increase our vulnerabilities.
“Access to adequate, affordable and reliable energy sources is the fulcrum to the economic transformation of the African continent and key to unlocking our development potential. In order to achieve this, there ought to increased investment to provide the requisite energy infrastructure, reliable availability and services to the social and productive sectors. The affront cost of capital investment for energy infrastructure, coupled with the limited access to funding, has inhibited the progressive development of these critical facilities,” he said.
He said there is a need for a collaborative financing mechanism as a response to the challenges in Africa's energy sector.
The 14th German-African Energy Forum discussed issues pertaining to how Africa’s Energy sector can become smart, green and bring about inclusive economic transformation.