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Declaration of the STC Sub Committee on Energy of the Specialized Technical Committee on Transport, Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, Energy and Tourism

Declaration of the STC Sub Committee on Energy of the Specialized Technical Committee on Transport, Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, Energy and Tourism

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December 01, 2020

We, the Ministers in charge of Energy meeting by Video Conferencing on 1 December 2020 as the STC Sub Committee on Energy of the Specialized Technical Committee on Transport, Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, Energy and Tourism, convened by the African Union Commission (AUC) to take stock of the implementation status of the Actions Plan adopted by the STC-TTIIET at its second ordinary session held in April 2019 in Cairo, Egypt;

CONSIDERING:
1. The Treaty establishing the African Economic Community adopted in Abuja, Nigeria, in June 1991;
2. The Constitutive Act of the African Union adopted in Lomé on 11 July 2000, especially its Articles 14 to 16, which stipulate that the African Union Commission should in particular coordinate policies in the fields of Energy, Transport, Communication and Tourism sectors;
3. The Decision: Assembly/AU/Dec.227 (XII) reconfiguring the existing STCs and created one on Transport, Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, Energy and Tourism;
4. The Decision: EX.CL/1162(XXXV) on the Second Ordinary Session of the Specialized Technical Committee on Transport, Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, Energy and Tourism (STC-TTIIET);
5. The African Union Covid-19 Urgent Measures and Recovery Plan for the Energy Sector;
6. The reports submitted to the Second Ordinary Session of the STC Sub-Committee on Energy.

We, the Ministers, reiterating our commitment to develop the energy sector and our strong will to implement the outcomes of this meeting:

7. Expressed gratitude to the Bureau of the STC Sub-Committee on Energy for its swift action in convening an Extra-Ordinary Session on 12 May 2020 to chart out a coordinated continental response to the Covid-19 pandemic and adopting an Action Plan of Urgent Measures and Recovery prioritising the provision of energy for health facilities and cushioning vulnerable citizens during the Covid-19 crisis;
8. While commending the significant achievements made by AREI in promoting renewable energy on the continent, observed that AREI had not met since the outbreak of Covid-19 and recommended the holding of a special AREI meeting to consider the implications of the pandemic on financing for the target of 300 GW renewable energy investments by 2030.
9. Expressed gratitude to the African Union Commission for convening the Second Ordinary Session of the STC Sub-Committee on Energy and close follow-up of essential developments of the energy sector in Africa despite the challenges imposed by the Covid-19 pandemic;
10. Expressed concern over the slowing down of energy access in Africa and over the lack of reliable energy to provide power to the critical facilities needed to contain Covid-19 pandemic and to help Africa recover;
11. Affirmed our commitment to develop integrated and efficient systems through the application of sound policy and development strategies to enhance efficiency, sustainability and affordability of energy services on the continent;
12. Took note of the diligent work accomplished by the Experts’ Meeting in preparing the key outcomes of this ministerial meeting of the Sub-Committee on Energy.

Hereby agreed as follows;

13. Highlighted the crucial role of energy in the post-Covid-19 recovery, accelerating digitalization and industrialization, supporting AfCFTA effective operationalization as well as achievement of the main goals of the AU Agenda 2063 for continental integration, prosperity and peace;
14. Took note of the status of implementation of the Cairo Action Plan and thanked the Member States, AUC, AU Specialized Agencies and Regional Organizations for their efforts in implementing the Action Plan and called upon them to redouble their efforts to ensure full implementation of the Action Plan;
15. Took note of the status implementation of the Covid-19 Response and Recovery Action Plan by Member States, AUC, AU Specialized Agencies and Regional Organisations;
16. Called for expedited implementation of the post-Covid-19 Action Plan and for mobilizing public, private and multilateral investments to adopt smart energy solutions, improve energy mix and energy transition; deploy off-grid, mini-grid, decentralized power supply at large scale to minimize the effects of the pandemic on lives, livelihoods and economies in Africa;
17. Called for more cost-effective, digitalized and capacitated utilities that can lead the energy transition and incentivize private sector investments in resilient clean energy projects to accelerate a green recovery;
18. Insisted on accelerating programmes for clean cooking and making use of Africa’s crude oil and natural gas production for the benefit of the African population;
19. Invited international partners that manufacture and supply energy equipment, machines and systems to localize their activities in Africa, ensuring local content, technology transfer and compliance to harmonised standards;
20. Thanked development partners for their financial and technical assistance in the implementation of the Cairo Action Plan, the Covid-19 Response and Recovery Action Plan, and other ongoing projects and programmes;
21. Welcomed the progress made towards the operationalization of a continental electricity market and recommended the approval of the Policy Paper and Roadmap including the governance structure of the African Single Electricity Market (AfSEM) and launch of AfSEM at the next meeting of the AU Assembly;
22. Commended the AUDA-NEPAD in collaboration with the AUC, AfDB, UNECA and other regional organizations for the completion of the first phase of the Continental Power Systems Masterplan and thanked the EU for its financial and technical support, and the AfDB for coordinating resource mobilization efforts for the second phase of the Continental Power Systems Masterplan;
23. Commended AFREC in revamping and modernizing the African Energy Information System (AEIS) and welcomed the official launch of AEIS, and, recognizing the importance of data in the policymaking process, called upon the Member States, Pan African Institutions and development partners to support the implementation of the programme with special attention to the improvement of National Energy Information Systems (NEIS);
24. Commended the UNECA for its efforts to crowd-in private sector investments through its new initiatives of Regulatory Review of the Electricity Sector in Africa and the SDG7 Initiative for Africa and acknowledged their potential for accelerating clean energy investments for access and climate ambition;
25. Welcomed the progress achieved by some Member States in the field of peaceful uses of nuclear energy and technologies including for nuclear power generation and called for the strengthening of cooperation between the African Commission on Nuclear Energy (AFCONE), International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and other AU Strategic Partners in the development of safe, secure and peaceful nuclear programmes in Africa;
26. Acknowledged the health, environmental and socio-economic benefits of clean fuels and recommended the adoption of AFRI Fuels Specifications Roadmap;
27. Recommended the adoption of the following completed studies:
a. Bioenergy Strategy and Investment Plan for West Africa
b. Modernizing Cooking Technologies and Fuels in Africa
c. Gender Mainstreaming in the African Energy Sector
d. Unlocking Africa’s Mini-Grid Market
e. Benefits of Adopting the AFRI Fuels Specifications Roadmap
f. Policy Paper and Roadmap - Towards a Single African Electricity Market
28. Acknowledged and commended all multilateral financial institutions and partners, including the AfDB, the World Bank, EU, AREI, IEA and IRENA, among others, for their support through various joint initiatives;
29. Called for coordinated comprehensive preparations for COP26 to ensure a strong and united African voice to the effect that African priorities are taken on board and captured in the COP’s outcomes on energy and climate action.
30. Invited Member States and institutions to continue making inputs on various projects and programmes before the next meeting of the Ordinary Session of the STC-TTIIET;
31. Commended the spirit of openness and cordiality that prevailed in the deliberations of the meeting.

Done on 1 December 2020
The Sub-Committee on Energy

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