Reliable and cleaner supply of energy are critical for Angola’s drive towards economic diversification and sustainable development, the UN Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) said on Monday.

The urgent call was made by ECA’s Executive Secretary Vera Songwe, who recently held discussions with senior Angolan government officials on future cooperation areas, with particular emphasis on economic diversification and sustainable development in Angola, the ECA said in a statement issued on Monday.

“Songwe and her team of experts suggested to both President Joao Lourenco and the Minister of Energy and Water Resources, Joao Baptista Borges, that all must be done to further diversify Angola’s energy mix, by increasing the share of renewable energy in the total energy production of the country,” the statement read.

According to figures from the ECA, energy generation in Angola stands at about 3,334 megawatts, of which 55 percent is from diesel-powered plants.

The fuel is imported, despite Angola being the second largest producer of oil in Africa, after Nigeria,” the ECA said, adding that access to energy in Angola currently stood at 35 percent.

“Energy is one of the most demanding sectors in terms of financing, for developing economies such as Angola,” ECA’s Executive Secretary stressed.

The ECA also revealed that an agreement was reached between ECA officials and Angolan authorities “on the urgency to increase the share of renewable energy, especially solar, and gas-powered plants in Angola’s overall energy mix.”

According to the ECA, the target could be achieved through off-grid and mini-grid solutions involving solar boxes, especially with regards to satisfying the demands of non-industrial consumers across some 164 municipalities currently pegged to diesel-fired power solutions. Enditem

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