Pow­er­ing Africa

Finweek English Edition - - INSIDE -

There is a di­rect cor­re­la­tion be­tween eco­nomic growth and elec­tric­ity sup­ply. If Sub-Sa­ha­ran Africa is to ful­fil its prom­ise, it needs power and lots of it, says con­sul­tancy group McKin­sey in a new re­search re­port.

Nearly 600m peo­ple in the re­gion lack ac­cess to elec­tric­ity. Only seven coun­tries – Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Gabon, Ghana, Namibia, Sene­gal and South Africa – have elec­tric­ity ac­cess rates of more than 50%, it says. The rest of the re­gion has an av­er­age grid ac­cess rate of just 20%. As South Africans will very well know, hav­ing ac­cess to the grid doesn’t mean there is ac­tu­ally con­stant ac­cess to elec­tric­ity.

De­mand in the re­gion is ex­pected to in­crease four­fold by 2040, when an es­ti­mated 70% of the pop­u­la­tion is fore­cast to have grid ac­cess, ac­cord­ing to McKin­sey. More than 25% of elec­tric­ity will come from re­new­able sources, while 40% of new ca­pac­ity by 2040 could come from gas.

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