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Growing Need for a Dynamic Energy Mix and the Demand for Private Investment will Create New Opportunities for Independent Power Producers
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The access to electricity in Africa is well below the global average, presenting a significant opportunity for the development of the energy supply industry, largely in the form of private sector investments in electricity generation. Many African governments are under immense pressure to improve the quality and reliability of electricity supplied within their respective countries. At the same time, however, governments face major constraints in finding suitable financing options and profitable business models that will ensure quality services in the energy sector. The growing pressure on the energy sectors of various African countries is primarily a result of the following 3 factors: non-performing revenue generation systems, aging infrastructure and a lack of finances available to fund new projects.The power sectors in African countries are monopolized by a single public utility responsible for the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity. The continuously increasing load being placed on public utilities and the need for private sector investments have highlighted the imperative need for energy sector reforms that will present an enabling environment for Independent Power Producers (IPPs) and subsequently create the opportunity for a healthy and competitive energy sector to flourish in Africa. For this study, we have looked at such reforms in South Africa, Tanzania, Kenya and Nigeria, to understand the role that IPPs have played in each country in terms of power generation, investment and overall structure of the power sector.Initially, this study will discuss the drivers and restraints to IPPs in Sub-Saharan Africa. Next, this research will provide an overview of the power sector and move on to discuss the impacts and outcomes of energy sector reforms, outline the contribution of IPPs and analyse the retail tariffs and licensing requirements for IPPs across each region. Lastly, this study will look at the investment opportunities that can be and have been created by the proliferation of IPPs in each region. With many countries unbundling their power generation and distribution sector, the market environment can now be easily regulated by governments and so the quality of service is expected to be improved significantly.
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