Commissioner for International and Development, Neven Mimica, issued today a joint press statement on the Africa Renewable Energy Initiative (AREI) together with Professor Alpha Condé, President of Guinea and African Union Coordinator for the AREI.
With new ambitious targets set for 2020, the European Union reaffirms its leading role in supporting the African continent in the fight against climate change and in the promotion of renewable energies.
Concrete actions and initiatives to meet the objectives are at the core of the EU-African commitment, both partners reaffirming their desire to hold regular dialogues at government level, notably in the margins of international events and in the framework of our joint Africa-EU strategic cooperation.
Commissioner Mimica said: "As the hottest year on record draws to a close, the European Union confirms its strong commitment in Africa for both reducing emissions and improving energy access for the world’s poor. But we must ensure that these pledges materialise into new projects. Concretely, by 2020, the EU has promised to facilitate investments that will increase the renewable electricity generation capacity of at least 5 GW. This is already half of the 10 GW goal of the Africa Renewable Energy Initiative for 2020."
Africa now has the opportunity to transition to a clean future, bypassing some of the environmentally destructive practices that have accompanied industrial development in the past decades.
This will only be possible if both the European and African private sector will engage on investment opportunities, industrial cooperation, local manufacturing and transfer of technologies, while avoiding negative environmental impacts and ensuring an efficient use of resources.
The European Commission, the EU Member States and the Financial Institutions must continue to work together through appropriate and modern financial instruments and mechanisms such as the Africa Investment Facility (AfIF), the Electrification Financing Initiative (ElectriFI) and the new opportunities to be made available under the EU External Investment Plan, to leverage the sustainable energy investments that will unlock the green potential and improve lives of millions in Africa.
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