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The African Development Bank and German's KfW Development Bank will be partnering to accelerate implementation of recommendations contained in the 2018 Electricity Regulators Index (ERI) report for Ivory Coast's energy sector.

This partnership arrangement between both institutions was announced during a technical workshop hosted by the African Development Bank in Abidjan this month.

The workshop brought together key stakeholders in Ivory Coast’s energy sector to review institutional and regulatory developments and assess implementation of recommendations in the inaugural 2018 ERI report.

“Developing robust regulatory frameworks is required to ensure an enabling environment for investments in the electricity sector and to pave the path to universal access to energy in Africa,” noted Wale Shonibare, AfDB’s director of energy financial solutions, policy and regulations.

Launched in June 2018 during the Africa Energy Forum (AEF) in Mauritius, the ERI is a diagnostic tool that highlights key areas in regulatory design and practice in Africa’s energy sector. Read more: Ivory Coast to invest in smart grid infrastructure

“The index provides a simple but powerful roadmap for policy makers and regulators to take actions to improve their regulatory frameworks and the attractiveness of the sector,” Shonibare said.

He observed that the 2018 Electricity Regulatory Index identified 13 key regulatory gaps across the 15 ERI participating countries, including Ivory Coast.

The report recommended specific interventions to address the gaps, which will be done through tailored technical assistance programmes in participating countries.

Mobilising private investments

Andreas Fikre-Mariam, regional director at KfW’s Abidjan office remarked that the KfW was mobilising private investment in Ivory Coast’s renewable energy sector and deepening cooperation between Germany and the government of Ivory Coast in the spirit of the G20 Compact for Africa.

“There are many projects underway that we are financing, including the Boundiali in Bouake, in collaboration with the African Development Bank… there is also a €10 million grant from Germany to Ivory Coast to promote the energy sector through sector reforms. This is to help achieve a major impact,” Fikre-Mariam explained.

Angaman Anoh from the Planning and Engineering department of Côte d'Ivoire Energies (CI-Energies) said energy industry stakeholders in the country now better understand the implications of the ERI report.

However, Anoh emphasised how critical it is that “regulators and utilities are consulted and involved at the early stage of the preparation of the index".