Speech by the Executive Director at the Regional Workshop on Energy Efficiency Initiatives and Sustainable Energy Data Collection

  • Representative of the Minister of Energy, Water, and Mines of Benin,
  • Representative of the President of the ECOWAS Commission in Benin,
  • Distinguished Delegates of ECOWAS Member States,
  • GIZ/PROMERC Programme Officer,
  • Ladies and Gentlemen of ECREEE’s Technical and Financial Partners,
  • Madam Representative of the ECOWAS Commission,
  • Representative of the WAEMU Commission,
  • Representatives of the African Union’s African Energy Commission,
  • Dear ECREEE Colleagues,
  • Distinguished guests,
  • Ladies and gentlemen

At the beginning of my remarks, allow me to convey to you the greetings of the Commissioner for Infrastructure, Energy and Digitalization of the ECOWAS Commission for your presence and for your mobilization for the official opening ceremony of the regional workshop on energy efficiency initiatives and sustainable energy data collection in West Africa organized by the Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency of the ECOWAS Commission. ECOWAS.

As an introduction to my speech, I would like to express my sincere appreciation to the Ministry of Energy, Water and Mines of the Republic of Benin for hosting this regional workshop and this is the place to highlight the excellence of the collaboration between ECREEE and Benin thanks to the dynamism of the ECREEE Focal Point in Benin and the commitment of the actors involved in the field of Sustainable Energy in Benin.

I am honored by the presence of the Representatives of the Energy Directorates of the ECOWAS Commission and the UEMOA Commission as well as the strong delegation of the African Energy Commission (AFREC) which is a specialized agency of the African Union; This testifies to the synergy of actions between the various regional institutions in a common vision of achieving the Sustainable Energy for All by 2030.

I would like to express my gratitude to ECREEE’s partners for their continued support, and this workshop will be used to present the initiatives currently being implemented or formulated with these partners. I would like to mention in particular the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the African Development Bank and kfW.

To conclude my introductory remarks, I would like to express ECREEE’s gratitude to GIZ through its multifaceted support under the ProMERC Programme. To illustrate this point, this workshop has been organised with a significant contribution from GIZ. I must express ECREEE’s gratitude to the GIZ/ProMERC Programme Officer for his constant support and for the quality of the coordination of this Project, which supports not only ECREEE but also the other specialised agencies, WAPP and ERERA.

Ladies and gentlemen

As you know, the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE) headquartered in Praia, Cape Verde, is the specialized agency of the ECOWAS Commission in charge of the promotion of Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency at the regional level and in Member States.

Also under the impetus of ECREEE, the ECOWAS Heads of State and Government adopted the ECOWAS Regional Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Policies in 2013.

To ensure the operationalization of its Regional Policies at the country level, ECREEE has supported the development of National Action Plans on Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency for the benefit of all Member States.

The implementation of these Regional Policies and the related National Action Plans have made it possible to achieve satisfactory results.

For example, the installed capacity of grid-connected solar photovoltaic power plants has increased from 5 MW in 2010 to 750 MW to date in the ECOWAS region with forecasts of 1 GW in 2025 and 5 GW in 2030, i.e. a 1000-fold increase in installed solar photovoltaic capacity between 2010 and 2030. ECREEE is proud to have initiated this dynamic. However, there are still major challenges to be met, such as the weakness of the Technology Transfer component, with a very low share of local content in the infrastructure built.

Another major challenge lies in the effective operationalization of the Regional Energy Efficiency Policy and the National Energy Efficiency Action Plans. While the energy efficiency initiatives implemented in the Member States are to be welcomed, it must be recognized that the financial resources allocated to Energy Efficiency are low compared to those allocated to Renewable Energies. The lack of verifiable results and/or indicators following the implementation of Energy Efficiency initiatives is a real weakness that hinders the promotion of Energy Efficiency in West Africa.

It is to address this specific challenge of low energy efficiency data that ECREEE and its partners have initiated this regional workshop on Energy Efficiency Initiatives and Sustainable Energy Data Collection.

Moreover, this workshop participates in the implementation of ECREEE’s 2023-2027 Strategic Plan, which is based on the ECOWAS Vision 2050 and the ECOWAS 4×4 Management Objectives. As a reminder, this 2023-2027 Strategic Plan was approved by the Ministers in charge of Energy in March 2023.

In connection with this workshop, it should be noted that ECREEE’s 2023-2027 strategic plan includes, among others, a Regional Energy Efficiency Programme, a regional sub-initiative ECOWAS Observatory on Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECOWREX) as well as a regional sub-initiative relating to the development of annual Plans on Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency progress in West Africa.

Distinguished Delegates of Member States,

Let me address you specifically.

In your capacity as Energy Data Focal Points of ECREEE and Energy Efficiency Data Focal Points of AFREC within the Ministerial Departments of your respective countries, you are the guarantors of efficient management of the “Sustainable Energy” component of the Energy Information System at the West African level.

I would like to testify to your professionalism and your commitment to carrying out your activities.

I am delighted with the interaction between the various regional institutions, namely the African Energy Commission, the ECOWAS Commission and the WAEMU Commission, and you are the main actors who are working towards a perfect synergy of actions with these institutions by promoting joint initiatives, which makes it possible to avoid duplication of activities and ensure the optimization of allocated resources.

It is also interesting to draw inspiration from successful experiences such as that of the Kingdom of Morocco.

You can be assured of ECREEE’s constant support in the implementation of your Sustainable Energy data management activities and this regional workshop is one of the illustrations of this.

You are also the ones who support regional initiatives such as ECOWREX and the Annual Report on Progress in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency in West Africa.

Specifically, I urge you to fully play your role in the Renovation of ECOWREX and in the development of the 2023 edition of the Annual Report on Progress in RE and EE. It is a question of having a Platform and Reports that meet international standards and are based on a robust and efficient energy data management system.

The ECREEE Team, under the supervision of the Senior Energy Efficiency Program Officer and the Energy Data Officer, is at your disposal for the full realization of your missions.

To conclude my specific remarks addressed to you, I would like to reiterate my thanks for your mobilization and for your sustained action in the implementation of ECREEE’s activities.

Ladies and gentlemen of AFREC,

I appreciate the perfect collaboration between AFREC and ECREEE in the implementation of several initiatives and you would like to convey my distinguished greetings to my dear colleague Rashid Ali Abdallah, Executive Director of AFREC. As an example, AFREC and its partners in collaboration with ECREEE and ECOWAS Member States have developed and published the Report on the Energy Saving Potential in West Africa to 2040.

In connection with this workshop, your commitment is valuable and the synergy of actions should make it possible to meet the challenge of the low data on Energy Efficiency in the West African region.

Ladies and gentlemen

Before concluding my remarks, I would like to announce the beginning of the celebration of 14 years of ECREEE’s actions.

You will recall that it was on 6 July 2010 that ECREEE’s activities were launched in Praia, Cape Verde, with the signing of the Headquarters Agreement for the hosting of ECREEE between the ECOWAS Commission and the Government of Cape Verde.

During the week of July 8, 2024 and as a celebration of its 14th anniversary, ECREEE will share with you and with all the actors involved in the field of Sustainable Energy, the assessment of its latest achievements including the sustainable energy infrastructure built in Member States through the ECOWAS Special Intervention Fund (ESIF),  the recent publications as well as the new website and the new version of the online platform of the ECOWAS Sustainable Energy Skills Certification Scheme.

Ladies and gentlemen

Access to Sustainable Energy for All by 2030 is the ultimate goal of ECREEE and this workshop will contribute significantly to the achievement of this goal.

Therefore, I would like to invite you to enriching exchanges and I would like to urge you to continue the efforts already undertaken by you for a just energy transition in West Africa.

I would also like to reiterate my thanks to all the partners who support ECREEE.

I would like to congratulate the ECREEE team for all their hard work during the preparation of this workshop.

ECREEE invites you to meet on November 28 and 29, 2024 in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire for the 9th edition of the ECOWAS Sustainable Energy Forum (ESEF 2024) organized in Collaboration with the Ministry of Mines, Petroleum and Energy of Côte d’Ivoire.

I wish everyone a successful workshop.

Merci pour votre aimable attention – Thank you so much – Muito obrigado