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Experts in infrastructure and energy sectors push to accelerate development in Africa.

Experts in infrastructure and energy sectors push to accelerate development in Africa.

September 13, 2023

Infrastructure connectivity and availability of sufficient, reliable, affordable, and sustainable energy are necessary for regional integration in Africa. The African Union is keen on accelerating the pace of development for roads, rails, ports, power generation, and transmission infrastructures for productive uses, industrialization, job creation, poverty alleviation, and facilitation of trade among its Member States.

Experts drawn from the infrastucture and energy sectors have concluded a two-day meeting in Zanzibar, Tanzania, reviewing the progress of existing projects and making recommendations on actions and innovative pathways to accelerate the development. Convened under the African Union Specialised Technical Committee on Transport, Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, and Energy. The STC, convened at a time when the AU is evaluating the implementation of the First Ten-Year Implementation Plan (FTYIP) of Agenda 2063 and ahead of the launch the Second Ten-Year Implementation Plan (STYIP) seeks to rally Member States and stakeholders to commit to the implementation of the STYIP by highlighting the crucial and catalytic role of infrastructure and energy in attaining the aspirations of Agenda 2063. The STC is convened under the theme, “Accelerating Infrastructure to Deliver on Agenda 2063 Aspirations”.

Dr. Kamugisha Kazaura, AU Commission Director of Infrastructure and Energy restated the African Union commitment to support member states and Regional Economic Communities in developing the Transport, Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, and Energy sectors. “It is our expectation that the decisions during this meeting will help accelerate the implementation of the infrastructure and energy projects and address pressing needs for basic infrastructure among the Member States.” He further highlighted the progress made in the implementation of key projects and initiatives on Energy and Transport, as well as the PIDA programme. This includes:

  • The implementation of the action plans of the African Single Electricity Market (AFSEM) launched in 2021 to strategically enhance the continent's energy security and the sustainability of the African electricity sector through the integrated continental electricity market.
  • The Geothermal Risk Mitigation Facility which has been successful in providing grants to project developers in Eastern Africa. Over forty (40) projects have qualified for grants amounting to about US$ 130 million, which will leverage investments of about USD 10 billion and contribute 3,500 MW to the energy mix in Eastern Africa. The AU Commission is planning to establish a geothermal capacity-building programme to further support Member States.
  • The AU Commission is developing full-scale programmes to explore Africa's potential in green hydrogen and solar energy while partnering with key institutions to explore opportunities for scaling-up climate finance and expanding mini-grids in Africa.
  • Under the transport sector, significant achievements have  been made in the various Transport sub sectors (Road, rail, air and maritime transport). These include, among others  the development of  a continental Roadmap for a Comprehensive and Integrated Regulatory Framework for Road Transport in Africa, establishment of the African Green Ports' Forum, finalization of the report on ports efficiency and competitiveness in Africa, revision of the Abuja Aviation Safety and Air Navigation Targets to align them with the global aviation targets, a continental Sustainable Aviation Fuels initiative, and the development of the SAATM Pilot Implementation Project.
  • The Second PIDA Priority Action Plan (PIDA PAP2) adopted in 2021 has enhanced multi-sectoral and cross-sectoral approaches to infrastructure development in Africa and has 69 PIDA priority projects requiring an investment of USD 161 billion all through to 2030.

Representing the AUDA-NEPAD Mr. Simbini Tichakunda, called for all stakeholders to accelerate efforts towards achieving the goals of the AU Agenda 2063 through the implementation of critical initiatives, including the Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA), accentuating the importance of enhancing coordination and cooperation among all stakeholders. The Acting Director of the Private Sector Development and Finance Division of the UN Economic Commission for Africa, Mr. Robert Lisinge, reiterated the importance of infrastructure and enhanced connectivity in facilitating trade and industrialisation on the continent, especially meeting the objectives of the African Continental Free Trade Area. He stressed the importance of achieving energy security on the continent especially within the context of current realities. He highlighted the key roles of private sector in leveraging financing for projects and the building of strategic partnerships develop adequate infrastructure on the continent.

To scale-up efforts in providing sustainable and universal access to infrastructure services for integrated markets and enhanced trade competitiveness, the Mr. Samuel Khasapane Kikine, Director Road Network Planning, Lesotho Ministry of Public Works and Transport, and Chairperson of the Experts session of the Specialized Technical Committee on Transport Transcontinental and Interregional Infrastructure and Energy underscored the timeliness and importance of the meetings to address the existing and emerging challenges particularly those posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the current global market uncertainties due to the Russia-Ukraine conflict, and climate change impacts. He called on member states to reflect collectively as a continent to explore innovative and efficient ways to reduce and mitigate the negative impacts on the energy and infrastructure sectors in Africa.

The Permanent Secretary of the Ministry for Infrastructure, Communications and Transport, of the United Republic of Tanzania,  Mrs Khadija Khamis Rajabu, called on Member States to work together to implement continental and regional projects that enhance economic growth in African countries. She noted the importance of enhancing energy and infrastructure services and the need for AU and its partners to fast-track the implementation of the programmes.

The Ministerial session will be held on the 15th September 2023 where the Ministers will discuss and consider the recommendations of the Experts.

The STC brings together AU Member States: Ministers and experts responsible for transport (i.e. Air, Road, Railway and Maritime Transport), and energy sectors; Regional Economic Communities (RECs); Continental Organisations: AUC, AUDA-NEPAD, AfDB and UNECA; AU Specialised Agencies and Institutions; and other partner organisations.

For More Information, Please Contact:

Ms. Bezayit Eyoel| Department of Infrastructure and Energy| African Union Commission| Mobile:  +251913223288 | E-mail:|

Doreen Apollos| Directorate of Information and Communication| African Union Commission |mobile+251 (0) 911630631| E-mail:|

Information and Communication Directorate, African Union Commission I E-mail:
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