The three-day Energy Access Investment Forum (EAIF) took place in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on 28-30 June 2022. The decentralised renewable energy (DRE) industry and investors came together to participate in the two-track programme, lively exhibition, GET.invest Matchmaking sessions, and receptions. Supported by the European Union and GET.invest, EAIF 2022 attracted over 1,200 participants including private and public investors, industry representatives and public officials.The event was sponsored by AfDB, ENGIE Energy Access, Sagemcom, Schneider Electric, TCX, WaterKiosk, AECF, BAE Batterien, BURN, D-REC Initiative, NRECA International, Okra Solar, Phaesun, and REPP.
Together with GET.invest – a European programme that mobilises investment in renewable energy in developing countries, supported by the European Union, Germany, Sweden, the Netherlands and Austria -ARE facilitated over 520 scheduled matchmaking meetings between investors, technology providers, project developers, as well as development partners and innovators in the DRE sector.
The Forum was opened with high-level welcome remarks emphasising the importance of accelerating efforts to achieve a higher uptake of DRE from the Tanzanian Minister of Energy, Hon. January Yusuf Makamba, AfDB, IRENA, ARE, as well as Manfredo Fanti, Ambassador, Delegation of the European Union to Tanzania who said: “The EU sees catalysing private sector investments in DRE as a critical part of the EU Global Gateway strategy enabling sustainable energy connections that work for the people and the planet. As a follow-up to the EU-Africa Business Forum in February, EAIF is a perfect occasion for public and private investors, industry, governments and other stakeholders to contribute to this objective and develop business partnerships. On that note, the EU is proud to partner with ARE for this year’s edition of the EAIF.”
Speakers on the first day’s high-level panels discussed the critical role that green recovery initiatives can play in catalysing private sector investments to boost green recovery efforts across Sub-saharan Africa. Following the high-level panels, the Forum moved on to thematic and pitching sessions on green mini-grid investments, productive use approaches, and working capital for DRE companies.
The agenda for the second day was packed with sessions in French and English, focusing on business and investment opportunities in the renewable electrification sector in various countries such as Mozambique, Burundi, Uganda, Congo, Nigeria, and Benin. Speakers on the second day highlighted the importance of working together to create a more conducive market environment to catalyse investment in the DRE sector.
Joao Duarte Cunha, Division Manager, Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa managed by the African Development Bank said: “Despite the challenges of the pandemic, EAIF 2022 has shown that the DRE community is as vibrant as ever. Still, there is much to be done towards a robust and better capitalised sector. We look forward to continuing our support to countries and businesses with our growing suite of catalytic finance instruments. We are also grateful to ARE for providing this unique platform for dialogue and action to accelerate energy access in Africa.”
Moreover, the event created many networking occasions for attendees. On top of the GET.invest matchmaking sessions, industry representatives had the opportunity to meet investors, financiers and government officials during breaks and evening receptions.
On the final day of the EAIF 2022, the sessions were solely focused on Tanzania’s renewable electrification sector, providing industry representatives from Tanzania and international investors with a unique opportunity to do business and develop partnerships. Speakers put a spotlight on renewable electrification, the blue economy and innovative renewable energy solutions in Tanzania.
Wrapping up the three-day event, David Lecoque, CEO, ARE concluded: “On behalf of ARE, I would like to thank all participants who joined EAIF 2022 on-site and virtually. This year’s event was a concrete step taken towards reaching universal energy access with the GET.invest matchmaking sessions, exhibition, panel discussions, thematic and pitching sessions and more. It is only through extensive cooperation that we can achieve SDG-7. The region and the sector is open for business. Now, it is time to invest in renewable electrification!”