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Communication experts from the RECs, Journalists, and Energy Experts in a group photo opportunity with the Electrical Engineer in charge of the Wind Farm, Eng. Kaarinah Luvango

Energy Experts discuss enhancement of Sustainable Energy Market in Eastern Africa-Southern Africa-Indian Ocean Regions

East African Community Headquarters, Arusha, Tanzania, 3rd August, 2018: A four-day third meeting of the Technical Steering Committee of the project on enhancement of sustainable regional energy market in the Eastern Africa-Southern Africa-Indian Ocean (EA-SA-IO) Region concluded on Thursday 2nd August at Hilton Hotel in Nairobi, Kenya.

The project on enhancement of sustainable regional energy market in the Eastern Africa-Southern Africa-Indian Ocean (EA-SA-IO) Region seeks to address market governance and regulatory related challenges affecting the implementation of energy development projects in the Eastern Africa, Southern Africa and Indian Ocean region. It is supported by a seven million euros fund provided under the 11th European Development Fund (EDF) for a period of four years since the signing of the grant delegation agreement with COMESA in May 2017.

The meeting brought together five Regional Economic Communities: The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the East African Community (EAC), Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Indian Ocean Commission (IOC), and the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC).

Others were the Regional Association of Energy Regulators, Regional Power Pools, Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Centres, and the European Union Delegation (EUD) to Kenya and Zambia.

The COMESA Regional Association of Energy Regulators for Eastern and Southern Africa (RAERESA) coordinates the implementation of the programme.

The programme has three results areas namely; a regionally harmonized energy regulatory and policy framework that integrates gender perspectives; enhancement of regulatory capacity of the National Regulatory Authorities and Power Pools to proactively influence developments in the energy sector; and lastly, enhancement of renewable energy and energy efficiency to attract investments in clean energy and build capacity in clean energy in the region as well as the domestication on a demand driven basis.

Officiating at the opening ceremony, Kenya’s Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Energy, Dr. Eng. Joseph K. Njoroge, noted that the meeting came at a time when the Republic of Kenya was fostering the development and utilization of renewable energies to enhance energy security and expand access to modern energy with the ultimate goals of improving the livelihoods of Kenyans and beyond. He said that it was indisputable fact that sustainable and affordable energy supply was pivotal to realizing economic and social development in the regions.

The Principal Secretary, who was represented by Eng. Julius M. Mwathani, the Secretary for Electrical Power Development at the Ministry, was confident that the initiative on enhancing Sustainable Regional Energy Market in the Eastern Africa-Southern Africa-Indian Ocean (EA-SA-IO) Region will lead to harnessing of the best minds in Africa, and channeling technical and financial resources in an efficient and effective manner to address contemporary developmental challenges, and catalyze the private sector to make it, as mandated, a significant contributor to the development process in Africa.

Addressing the same audience, the Assistant Secretary General (Programmes), of COMESA, Amb. Dr. Kipyego Cheluget, disclosed that the programme will influence developments in the the five RECs’ energy sector and enhance the capacity of regulators in providing and enforcing regulations that enhance the regional market. “It will also enhance the renewable energy regulatory frameworks to promote investment in renewable energy and energy efficiency, as well as integrate gender perspectives in energy policy and regulation”

The COMESA Assistant Secretary General, who was represented by Dr. Mohamedain Seif Elnasr, Chief Executive Officer of the COMESA based Regional Association of Regulatory Authorities in the Eastern and Southern Africa, commended the role of the European Union in developing Africa’s infrastructure including energy infrastructure and applauded the contribution by the EU through the different European Development Funds and other mechanisms in advancing the implementation of many continental, regional and national projects, related to infrastructure in general and specifically energy projects, among others.

On his part, the Representative of the EU delegation program manager and Ag. Head of Sections Infrastructure, in the Republic of Kenya, Mr. Jean-Noel Gangloff, said that building an energy market that stimulates power trading and promotes energy security, as well as leverages on each countries strengths and shields the risk of country level inadequacies was very important for the Eastern Africa-Southern Africa-Indian Ocean (EA-SA-IO) Region.

The EU Representative noted that this was an opportunity to integrate the regional electricity market sustainably, which requires the process of consensus building from a policy and regulatory perspective. “It is therefore important that the various actors in the region engage in the process of building a common understanding and a harmonized approach in how the sector is governed”, noted the EU Envoy.

He asserted that in partnering with the regional economic organizations on the 7 million Euro regional energy programme, “the European Union recognizes and believes that we can together enhance the regional energy market in a harmonized way, as well as promote energy efficiency and other renewable energy sources, thus taking the development of the regional energy market a step further”.

The Program Manager - Infrastructure, European Union in Zambia, Mr. Graham Ching’ambu, noted that the project was not only about rules and regulations but also about the creation of an energy market. In this regard, he pointed out that the project could be a driver for market and industrial growth within the region and could also contribute to lowering production costs hence enhancing competitiveness.

The 3rd meeting of the Programme Technical Steering Committee (PTSC) of the project, which was chaired by the EAC Senior Energy Officer, Mr. Elsam Byempaka Turyahabwe, reviewed progress on the status of implementation of the First-Year Work Programme 2017 – 2018; considered the Annual Report of the Project, and adopted the 2018 – 2019 Second-Year work plan and Budget of the Project on Enhancement of a Sustainable Regional Energy Market in the EA-SA-IO Region.

Prior to the energy experts meeting, an awareness-training workshop for regional journalists and communication experts from the participating organizations was conducted on July 30, 2018 as part of the project’s communication and visibility strategy.

Communication experts from the RECs, Ministries of Energy, Energy Associations and Power Pools participated in the one-day training and study tour on Kenya’s renewable energy project, the 25.5 MW Ngong Hills Wind Power Station/Wind Farm. Journalists from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, and Burundi attended the training and study tour.

Chairing and hosting of the meeting of the Programme Technical Steering Committee is on rotational basis among the regional blocs hence the Nairobi meeting was chaired and hosted by the EAC. The next PTSC will be held in March 2019 and hosted by the Indian Ocean Commission (IOC)


For more information, please contact:

Mr Owora Richard Othieno
Head, Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Department
EAC Secretariat
Arusha, Tanzania
Tel: +255 784 835021
Email: OOthieno [at] eachq.org

About the East African Community Secretariat:

The East African Community (EAC) is a regional intergovernmental organisation of five Partner States, comprising Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, with its headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania. 

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East African Community
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Tel: +255 (0)27 216 2100
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Email: eac@eachq.org