by Simon Capstick-Dale

Obama's Power Africa project

Project Focus

Power Africa project
Power Africa project

During his recent visit to South Africa, US President Barack Obama announced an initiative to boost access to electricity in sub-Saharan Africa, where more than two-thirds of people are without electricity. He also said the US stood to benefit should the continent reach its full potential.

The $7-billion (R69bn) project – dubbed Power Africa – aims to double access to electricity  across six countries that have been singled out for promoting good governance - Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Nigeria and Tanzania.

US administration officials said the $7-billion in government assistance would complement around $9-billion in private funds. During the first five-year phase, the project aims to add more than 10 000 megawatts of cleaner, more efficient electricity generation capacity and will expand electricity access to at least 20 million new households and commercial entities.

General Electric is among the companies that have contributed to the $9-billion n private sector funding for the programme's first phase. It has committed to help bring 5 000MW of new energy to Tanzania and Ghana.

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