High-Level Dialogue: Pandemic Response and Recovery and Africa's Energy Transformation

The COVID-19 pandemic has created an unprecedented global emergency that is affecting peoples’ lives and disrupting economies. While the first response must focus on saving lives and providing immediate support for livelihoods, as economies start to rebuild recovery measures must prioritise the establishment of a more resilient and sustainable global economy.

As the health and humanitarian crisis unfolds, it has become evident that the pandemic is multiplying the already-existing risks and vulnerabilities. Among those, the lack of energy security and access to modern energy service is severely impeding the capacity to cope with the health crisis and economic downturn. Recovery measures must, therefore, not only respond to the pandemic but also create resilient economies and societies. Africa has already embarked on a transformative energy pathway to harness its immense renewable energy potential. Accelerating progress in this regard can alleviate multiple immediate problems, while creating jobs, advancing industrial development and promoting welfare.

Further to the announcement by the African Union Commission (AUC) and the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) to work closer to address Africa’s pandemic response, the two parties organised a virtual dialogue to reflect on Africa’s energy transformation as part of the continent’s response to the post-COVID 19 pandemic recovery. This high-level meeting discussed Africa's needs in responding to the COVID19 crisis and the role of the energy transformation.

With a view to improving the continent’s resilience and stimulating economic recovery and sustainable growth in the post-pandemic period, the discussion provided reflections and guidance from African governments and development partners for reinforcing action on the ground towards accelerating the ongoing energy transformation in Africa. The discussion in particular considered Africa’s Agenda 2063 goals, and alignment of the pandemic response with the sustainable development and climate objectives.

Supporting Documents

For more information please contact the IRENA Secretariat.