Power Africa: Africa's Energy Sector and Concerns About Corporate-Led Solutions
13 Pages Posted: 23 Nov 2014 Last revised: 18 Dec 2014
Date Written: November 21, 2014
Power Africa comes in the context of a somewhat renewed US foreign policy focus on African development. The initiative's promised investment is large but the overall model is not new. Power Africa can be seen as a throwback to a previous era in development policy when large infrastructure projects and technical know-how in fields such as education and agriculture were the norm. But a focus on existing models of aid and a reflection on the recent experience in corporate-led utility reform via privatization raises sharp concerns about Power Africa's efforts to bring modern electricity access to 60 million households. A main concern is over the level of public input from the future beneficiary consumers of Power Africa projects. This concern raises a critical point needs to be made, one that has largely been thus far ignored: that electricity is a public good.
Keywords: Energy, Africa, Development Policy
JEL Classification: O1, Q40, O55
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation