Following two years of COVID restrictions we are excited that the Africa Energy Forum (aef) is back to full capacity with the return of the massive exhibition, the four-day multi-streamed agenda focusing on the private sectors investment needs and business development. In Brussels aef will welcome back over 2,500 industry leaders (doubling the number we saw in London last year), from some 82 countries worldwide – yes, the African energy community is back ‘in one place’, to build back better and accelerate energy deals and projects.
Simon Gosling, Managing Director of EnergyNet, commented “It’s great to be back to full capacity!! As we reflect on the past 24 months it feels like the world has truly adjusted and is daring to be more responsible in investment decision making. However, responsible investing needs to be aligned with the reality of the private sector which can only survive in a profit enabled world, seeking out new revenue streams to maintain a strong and sustainable business. At aef in Brussels we will therefore be looking at financing and blended energy solutions, to reduce emissions significantly across the industrial landscape, whilst also maintaining capacity output, growth and broader job creation – THE JUST TRANSITION”
Whilst countries across Africa remain some of the biggest investment destinations anywhere in the world, the energy sector is still significantly underinvested, not necessarily because of a lack of capital, but often due to a lack of capacity to build at pace and an underdevelopment industrial base. aef will therefore continue to focus on building new capacity in the energy markets and the evacuation of those electrons to enable and better serve the industries, business and homes that will in turn create a more bankable and sustainable investment climate.
Being a closed forum (not open to the general public), aef will again provide stakeholders a destination to have meaningful discussions around blockages in specific projects, learn of new areas of investment such as the vast offshore potential of wind and gas, and of course break down some of the barriers to investment which is stunting the number of projects reaching financial close which presently sits at a rather lowly 10%.
Who’s back – we’re delighted to already have confirmed a plethora of new sponsors and are ready to announce a number of powerful new partnerships, however aef is about stability and enabling continuous engagement with stakeholders critical to private sector success including; governments, utilities, regulators, development finance institutions, commercial banks, power developers, technology providers, EPCs and professional services – needless to say, they are all back….
See you in Brussels.