African countries should address energy deficiency and promote the transition to low-carbon energy sources to grow their economies, said South African Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy Gwede Mantashe on Tuesday.
Over 600 million Africans have no access to electricity which contributes to the continent’s underdevelopment, Mantashe said at the 2023 Africa Energy Indaba, which kicked off on Tuesday in South Africa’s coastal city Cape Town.
“We must, therefore, work together and mobilize financial support to solve Africa’s energy challenges which include the lack of infrastructure. Energy production in Africa must be aligned to Africa’s socioeconomic development,” said Mantashe, noting that the African continent is well positioned to meaningfully benefit from the just energy transition era, due to its endowment with the mineral deposits.
“Our continent deserves the opportunity to develop its own oil and gas infrastructure, storage, refinery, and distribution to cushion its people against the turbulence of global markets and thereby secure its continental energy needs,” he said. “Africa must invest in the research of green technologies such as carbon capture, use and storage to minimize the impact on the planet.”
The 2023 Africa Energy Indaba, which will end on Thursday, is set to discuss solutions to address Africa’s energy challenges and how to advance the transition from coal to clean energy without affecting the economies of African countries, according to the organiser