The African Energy Chamber launched the State of Africa Energy 2022 report on October 25 during a virtual webinar, with a focus on post COVID-19 recovery and energy transition feasibility on the continent. The report provides key insights and trends stakeholders should watch out for in the African energy sector.

The global pandemic outbreak has left many economies unstable, due in part to the halting of business activities and project development; a drop in crude prices; and a decrease in capital expenditure. However, the report provides positive projections for Africa’s energy sector. The discussion during the launch was focused on Africa’s oil and gas sectors mitigating challenges and preparing for the energy transition.

African Energy Chamber Executive Chairman, Nj Ayuk said during his opening speech, “Africa will experience some challenges in the year 2022, but this outlook will provide a direction for the future of energy. As our economies wake up and try to survive the pandemic, the question should be, where is our industry going?”

The outlook forecasts a resurgence of pre-covid investments in the sector by 2023/24. Although there has been a drop in exploration on the continent, which can be attributed to the pandemic, some advancements have been made in mergers and acquisitions in regions such as Uganda, Libya, and the MSGBC basin.

Although there are opportunities in Africa’s renewable energy sector, the abundance of hydrocarbons on the continent cannot be ignored, AEC advisory Board member, Nosizwe Nokwe-Macamo said during the launch.

“The issue is how to balance being responsible and moving with [the] energy transition; [while] at the same time taking advantage of the hydrocarbon resources we are so rich in, to move away from energy poverty,” said Macamo.

The launch discussions further identified possible considerations for the African downstream energy transition plan that includes public funding needed to produce cleaner transport and cooking fuels with associated distribution infrastructure.

“The outlook clearly demonstrates what is happening and where the opportunities are and what should be done. We can quickly see a socio-economic outlook by using gas-to-power generation. In the Outlook, there’s a lot of detail in terms of timing perspective. I am encouraged that in Africa there is low demand, yet it is growing; over time there could be an increase in demand. This bodes well for the future of LNG projects on the continent- Mozambique, Nigeria and the MSGBC region,” added Nosizwe Nokwe-Macamo.

The report launch also touched on downstream and upstream models for fossil fuels, and how the African economy needs to develop its own resources – a topic that will be debated at the upcoming Africa Energy Week 2021, taking place in Cape Town, South Africa, on 8-12 November.