International energy experts are meeting in Somalia capital Mogadishu to discuss ways to rapidly increase sustainable energy access across the Horn of Africa nation.
The two-day conference organized by the government and the UN Development Programme (UNDP) brings together government officials, donors, private sector investors and practitioners and international sustainable energy experts.
“Sustained improvements in energy access in Somalia will require private sector investment on a large scale, alongside parallel public-sector investments in improving security, technical and institutional capacity building,” the UNDP said in a statement issued in Mogadishu.
The forum, whose theme is “Opportunities and Barriers to Investments in Sustainable Energy in Somalia,” aims to outline a clear set of short- and medium-term actions for the government and its partners, and a set of private and public project proposals that can be ready for investment within 12 months.
“Despite improvements in energy access in Somalia, millions of people still do not have access to electricity, energy costs are very high and there remains a strong reliance on charcoal and firewood for cooking,” UNDP said.
It said sustainable energy investments will support larger Somali development, peace building and resilient recovery goals, as laid out in the London Conference on Somalia, and the government’s National Development Plan.