Clean energy: Morocco well placed to attract G7 investments, according to the International Energy Agency

Clean energy: Morocco well placed to attract G7 investments, according to the International Energy Agency
Clean energy: Morocco well placed to attract G7 investments, according to the International Energy Agency

Morocco is one of the few African countries well placed to attract more investment in clean energy. This is what emerges from a report published by the International Energy Agency (IEA) on Clean Energy Investment for Development in Africa.

The report’s authors note, in fact, that some regions of Africa have effectively leveraged their low-emissions energy mix, growing workforce and competitive costs to attract new investments in emerging industries based on diverse sustainable energy technologies, such as in Morocco, Egypt and Kenya.

They also cited the Kingdom along with Ethiopia and Rwanda which have implemented policies that support industrial growth using more sustainable technologies.

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This evaluation is all the more important as this report was requested by the Italian presidency of the G7 (group of seven major economies which are the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom) to support its new “Energy for Growth in Africa” initiative.

This initiative, recalls the report, aims to promote investments in energy and climate in Africa, develop bankable clean energy projects, attract public and private capital, encourage concessional financing and overcome obstacles for investment throughout Africa.

This report aims to inform the G7 initiative by providing an overview of the energy-related investments needed, under the IEA’s Sustainable Africa Scenario (SAS), to achieve all of the continent’s goals related to energy and climate, including universal energy access and its nationally determined contributions (NDCs), by 2030.

Hydrogen, vehicle batteries, electrolyzers…

It then explores how best to finance clean energy projects and identifies the main types of initiatives needed to develop human and institutional skills and capacity for this purpose.

«With the need for investment in clean energy technologies in Africa having never been more urgent, this report comes at a critical time and lays the foundation for coordinated financing efforts between African and developed nation governments, institutions international financial and development organizations», underlines the IEA.

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The report indicates that a range of emerging industries based on various energy technologies will play an increasingly important role in Africa over the coming decades as the energy transition progresses.

These include, he illustrates, the extraction and processing of critical minerals, the production of low-emission steel and cement, the production of hydrogen and carbon-based fuels. hydrogen and the manufacturing of clean technologies such as vehicle batteries, photovoltaic solar panels, wind turbines, heat pumps, fuel cells and electrolysers.

For now, Africa only has a significant global presence in the extraction of critical minerals, including cobalt, platinum group metals (PGMs), manganese and copper, the report finds.

The necessary support from financial institutions

Industry in Africa currently accounts for a total of two-thirds of energy demand for production uses, according to the IEA. Total energy consumption for productive purposes in Africa will increase by 25% between 2023 and 2030, she estimates.

Read also: Green hydrogen: Morocco in the top 6 countries with high potential in the MENA region, according to a report from the World Economic Forum

This growth can be increasingly oriented towards electricity, with appropriate measures to keep electricity prices affordable, improve reliability and overcome barriers to initial investment for many small and medium-sized businesses who would make these investments, she recommends.

Key productive uses where appropriate policies could promote greater electrification include, according to the report, replacing diesel-powered irrigation pumps with pumps powered by solar and batteries; the extension of cold chains to enable safe and hygienic transport of agricultural products to urban centers; data centers; and industries such as paper and textiles.

Support from financial institutions would be needed to meet the high upfront costs of these modernization efforts, even if the most efficient, modern and sustainable options are less costly over their entire lifespan, the report’s authors say.

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