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U.S. Africa Energy Ministers Conference: A Partnership for the 21st Century

Thursday, October 21, 1999

U.S. Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson will co-host the U.S. - Africa Energy Ministers Conference: A Partnership for the 21st Century in Tucson, Arizona, December 13-15, 1999. President Clinton and Vice President Gore and their colleagues in Africa have agreed that through sustainable economic growth, Africa will be able to achieve the prosperity that will help to foster continuing peace and stability. This Conference is being held in recognition of the important role that sustainable, efficient, clean, and integrated energy development plays in achieving sustainable economic growth.

The Conference, and integral part of Secretary Richardson's African Energy Initiative, will focus on developing the energy infrastructure necessary to meet Africa's economic and environmental needs in the 21st century. Strategies to enhance investment in clean energy, opportunities for intra-regional energy market integration and the continued transition to a market-oriented business climate will be explored. Participation by leaders from government, the private sector, the African American community, multilateral institutions, and non-government organizations will make this a unique opportunity for a public/private dialogue on the key factors influencing the path of energy development.

The meeting is planned in two parts:

The first will be an interactive discussion involving senior government, industry, and financial representatives who will participate in plenary and roundtable discussions. Speakers will address critical issues on investment in clean energy development and use, energy integration, sustainable energy development, and attracting private sector investments. Specific areas for discussions will include oil and gas development, energy efficiency, renewable energy, and clean power development for electrification in urban and rural areas.

Second, ministers will meet to discuss energy investment and clean energy development, the role for the private sector in meeting energy infrastructure goals, steps to further energy market integration, and the central role of energy in addressing environmental concerns.

There will also be an opportunity for energy companies, energy agencies, non-government organizations, and other energy concerns to participate in an exhibit of energy technologies and services that can help fulfill the vision of a clean energy future.

Attendance is expected to be approximately 600. Participants would include African energy ministers: international organizations such as the World Bank; NGOs; representatives from the private sector; African Diplomatic Corps; African regional organizations such as the African Development Bank, Economic Community of West African States, Organization for African Unity, Southern African Development Community, and Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa; and academic institutions.

For further information, please call (202)586-1178 or visit the Web site (www.africaenergy.org).