The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) through the Power Africa initiative has reaffirmed its commitment to the African Development Bank-led Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (SEFA) initiative with a second tranche of funding of $11 million towards fulfilling its overall commitment of $20 million.
OGN gathered from the AfDB that the signing ceremony for this was done after the Power Africa Panel on Off-Grid Finance, within the precincts of the U.S. Center at the ongoing 22nd Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP22) in Marrakech, Morocco.
AfDB’s Vice-President, Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth, Amadou Hott, AfDB’s remarked in recognition of the U.S. government’s commitment to SEFA, that the second tranche will expand the important work by SEFA already underway in support of project preparation and enabling environment reforms for private sector-led renewable energy projects.
“Reaching universal access by 2025 will requires us at the African Development Bank and our partners to build a robust and dynamic pool of skills, finance and technical content to effectively, efficiently and urgently reach communities that are most in need,” said Hott in a statement from AfDB.
The Bank’s Vice-President further reiterated its commitment to deliver the ‘New Deal on Energy for Africa’ in a sustainable manner, adding that clean and renewable energy solutions will be encouraged and supported.
Similarly, the Coordinator of Power Africa, Andrew Herscowitz, who signed on behalf of the U.S. government, expressed satisfaction with the SEFA’s outreach to small and medium scale interventions that serve the diversified and expanding African energy sector.
Herscowitz stated that: “Power Africa’s contributions to SEFA will directly support the common objectives of the ‘New Deal’ and Power Africa of providing access to energy – affordable, clean and modern, to all Africans, promoting universal access to modern energy services.”
The statement added that AfDB and Power Africa are long-term strategic partners, stressing that shortly after Power Africa was launched in 2013, USAID committed to providing $20 million to support SEFA.
Also, the AfDB in 2014, committed to investing $3 billion in support of Power Africa’s goals, and its New Deal on Energy for Africa aims at helping the continent to achieve universal electricity access by 2025 with a strong focus on encouraging clean and renewable energy solutions, complementing Power Africa’s goals and objectives.
The SEFA was also launched in 2012 as a $95-million multi-donor facility funded by the governments of Denmark, the United Kingdom, the United States and Italy.
It supports the sustainable energy agenda in Africa through grants to facilitate the preparation of medium-scale renewable energy generation and energy efficiency projects, equity investments to bridge the financing gap for small and medium scale renewable energy generation projects, as well as support to the public sector to improve the enabling environment for private investments in sustainable energy.
It is reportedly hosted by the Energy, Environment and Climate Change Department of the AfDB.