The Missing Link is a strategic, multi-year initiative jointly implemented by RES4Africa Foundation and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), to work with 16 African countries in improving the preparedness of legislative and regulatory frameworks to crowd-in private-led investments across the electricity sector value chain.
Despite being a continent with great market potential and vast natural resources, Africa suffers from the consequences of the electricity access gap. By placing energy at the forefront of national development agendas, considerable progress has been made in improving access to electricity and expanding energy capacity in the last years but structural challenges remain within African electricity markets. The latest tracking progress reports on SDG7 acknowledge progress but insist on the need to increase the pace, and recognize that legislative and regulatory barriers remain a major challenge to effective private sector investment participation.
Knowing that universal access to energy is vital for supporting and fueling the continent’s socio-economic transformation and that private investments are crucial to achieving it, RES4Africa has launched the Missing Link Programme, a strategic, multi-year initiative to work with interested countries in improving the preparedness of legislative and regulatory frameworks to crowd-in private-led investments across the electricity sector value chain.
As the first stage of this initiative, RES4Africa Foundation and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) are working together to investigate the ability of African countries’ electricity policy and regulatory framework to enable private investments under three main dimensions:
Openness – Power sector structure and governance: this dimension covers policies, laws, and regulations meant to define energy policy and strategy priorities, market-entry, infrastructure planning, sector governance, market structures, and related considerations;
Attractiveness – Sector economics: this dimension assesses policies, laws, and regulations that ensure the economic viability of electricity infrastructure investments, as well as fair competition among market operators;
Readiness – Sector maturity: this dimension investigates technical regulations designed to ensure the implementation and efficient integration and management of electricity infrastructure within the electricity system.
The program aims to support African countries by:
Evaluate the effectiveness of national policies, laws, and regulations vis-à-vis private investors’ requirements and needs;
Define best practices in terms of policy and regulatory reforms based on successful experiences from other African countries;
Build consensus and political buy-in around possible roadmaps for reform;
Enhance national capacity for regulatory reforms;
Support the definition and implementation of reforms meant to crowd-in private sector investments.
The Missing Link covers a total of 16 African countries, providing extensive coverage and representation of all African regions, and benefits from the support of the Enel Foundation.
A tool to assess the Openness, Attractiveness, and Readiness of policy and regulatory frameworks and enhance private sector participation within the African electricity market.
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