Transformative actions for a just and equitable energy transition in Africa

Kigali, Rwanda, 19 May, 2022 (ECA) – African ministers - including ministers of energy, environment, and development - and high-level representatives from 10 African countries have endorsed seven transformative actions towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal 7 in Africa to ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.


In a communique released at the end of the global SEforALL Forum held in Kigali from 17-19 May 2022, the Ministers and high-level representatives from the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Morocco, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Uganda, and Zimbabwe met to discuss the requirements for a just and equitable energy transition in Africa.


The seven transformative actions will address development gaps on the continent, and aim to put Africa on a pathway to economic prosperity and Net-Zero that is within its own destiny.


“It is great to see a strong signal from our member States on embracing the clean energy transition defined and led by Africa. Africa is the last frontier for any transformative global investments in renewables,” said Vera Songwe, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Secretary of the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA).


 “A just and equitable energy transition brings multiple wins for people, planet and prosperity on the continent”.


Ms Songwe noted that the seven principles of the Kigali Communique provide a unified framework for building partnerships to support Africa’s energy transformation and climate action.


“The ECA will support member States in this agenda through its SDG7 Initiative, the Liquidity and Sustainability Facility (LSF), Team-Energy Africa, and other initiatives,” she said


The Kigali Communique articulates the principles of energy transition as well as the intention of African nations to work together to implement them.


The seven transformative actions towards achieving SDG7 in Africa endorsed by the ministers include: Make modern sustainable energy available to the entire continent; Support Africa in the deployment of gas as a transition fuel and the long-term displacement of gas by renewable energy and green hydrogen for industrial development, if financially and technically sustainable; Pursue a modern energy minimum of 1,000 kWh per capita consumption - middle income economies are consuming 2,500 kWh per capita and high-income economies 6,000 kWh per capita – in Africa, that also prioritizes a revolution in clean cooking; Scale-up private and public sector investment to well over $ 2 trillion in new generation, transmission and distribution infrastructure and new energy technologies and delivery systems; Prioritize the creation of millions of local jobs in the new sustainable energy sector to benefit local economies, including through the creation of local supply chains and climate-aligned national energy transition plans; Lift development finance restrictions that currently limit projects in Africa that can meet local development needs and ramp-up domestic resource mobilization; Catalyze a step-change in technology transfer mechanisms to ensure that the entire continent has access to the latest energy innovations, on fair terms.


According to the communique, Africa intends to pursue its pathway to a net-zero future aligned with the objectives of the Paris Agreement.


“Our historically low emissions, and our ambition of creating an economy-wide low-carbon development model, will continue to demonstrate our collective aim to be responsible stewards of our planet,” read the communique.


“We encourage our partners to align with these principles of a just and equitable energy transition in Africa, to turn their commitments into action, and join us in working towards meaningful progress that will benefit our future generations.”


The SEforALL Forum, which was co-hosted by the Government of Rwanda, provided an opportunity for the African Ministers and representatives to initiate these discussions around what a just and equitable energy transition will look like for Africa.


The discussions will continue over the coming months - including at the African Union Commission’s Specialized Technical Committee on Transport, Infrastructure, Intercontinental and Interregional Infrastructure, Energy and Tourism; the African Ministerial Conference on Environment; meetings of ministers of finance and planning; and other opportunities - leading up to COP27 to be hosted by Egypt in Sharm el-Sheikh in November 2022.


Link to the Communique:


Download the Kigali Communique here.


Issued by:

Communications Section

Economic Commission for Africa

PO Box 3001

Addis Ababa


Tel: +251 11 551 5826