Regional collaboration is key to securing energy supply and minimising costs, but regional integration in a mutually beneficial manner remains a challenge, said Ben Martins, deputy minister of state enterprises.
Speaking at African Utility Week
, Martins pointed out that Africa’s natural resources heighten the continent’s ability to build a strong manufacturing sector. However this growth hinge on reliable, stable power corridors.
"Eskom is committed to institutional capacity building and promoting cooperation within the SADC region through power pools. There is likely benefit to be had in leveraging from each other’s strengths and synergies to alleviate poverty,” he said.
He also warned the energy deficit in Africa is alarming – costing African economies between 2% and 4% of annual GDP.
He welcomed the conference as important at a time when Africa is facing mounting challenges in terms of access to modern energy sources as a prerequisite for economic development.
“Without efficient clean energy and adequate water supply efforts to engage in productive commercial activities to improve quality of life is greatly undermined.”
Martins assured delegates of the South African governments and other stakeholders’ commitment to work with them to find solutions to developing challenges.
“It is only through collaboration and working together that we can ensure prosperity for citizens of our country.”
About Nicci Botha
Nicci Botha has been wordsmithing for more than 20 years, covering just about every subject under the sun and then some. She's strung together words on sustainable development, maritime matters, mining, marketing, medical, lifestyle... and that elixir of life - chocolate. Nicci has worked for local and international media houses including Primedia, Caxton, Lloyd's and Reuters. Her new passion is digital media.