|Solar and other off-grid renewables could transform parts of Sub-Saharan Africa. Source: Martifer.|
The relatively quick deployment time of solar power could help to fix energy supply issues and get Sub-Saharan economies back on track, according to a new report by Commerzbank.
The second edition of its Renaissance in Sub-Saharan Africa research states that curing the region’s energy problems could have a dramatic effect on some countries' fortunes.
“The imbalances in the domestic energy markets could be overcome by a more intense use of renewable energies, such as solar, wind and water energy, which could catapult even underdeveloped rural areas into a new age,” it claims.
“…Technological 'leapfrogging' allows for the use of environmentally friendly, inexpensive and effective technologies, providing foreign investors with the necessary know-how with opportunities as well: current energy shortages are a major drag on economic growth,” the report states.
“Blackouts are fairly common, even in economically well-developed South Africa. Over the past several years, energy supply problems have even increased because of robust economic growth in many countries and a subsequent increase in energy demand.”
South Africa’s successful procurement programme has led the way for solar in Sub-Saharan Africa but there are a number of major commitments from Uganda and Kenya and large projects in Sierra Leone, Angola and Rwanda.