AFRICANGLOBE – The African Development Bank (AfDB) on Tuesday said it has earmarked up to $3 billion for Africa’s power sector over the next 5 years.
AfDB President, Donald Kaberuka, speaking from Dar Es Salaam, said the bank’s interventions will include investment loans, reforms, advisory and guarantees in the energy sector.
This is part of the bank’s backing for President Barack Obama’s $7 billion Power Africa plan which Obama unveiled on Saturday in Cape Town, South Africa.
The US-led power plan will pay more attention to advancing more access to power in Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria and Tanzania.
Blue chip companies including General Electric and Symbion Power will also invest an additional $9 billion.
Kaberuka said AfDB will increase investments in energy production, transmission and distribution infrastructure, cross-border power pools and regulatory reforms.
The bank will also move to fast track reforms in national power firms, many of which are desperately in need of better “business models and financial reinforcement.”
“Reforms are the key,” Kaberuka said. “The billions of dollars available for investment in the energy sector will translate into actual bulbs in people’s homes and electricity necessary to grow small businesses if state utilities run efficiently and effectively. The policy reforms will facilitate and enhance cross-border energy markets.”
The money will come from the Africa Development Fund (ADF), a unit of the AfDB.