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The Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) is ready and waiting for the 1500 visitors, including ministers from some of Africa’s most dynamic economies, that will be visiting African Utility Week


The Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC) is gearing up for a power invasion when African Utility Week kicks off on Monday 18 May until 22 May.  The city is expecting some 1500 visitors, including ministers from some of Africa’s most dynamic economies.

Fear of load shedding and a repeat of the country wide blackouts which were so much a part of South African life in 2008, continue to be issues which need to be urgently addressed.  Energy efficiency initiatives have formed a major part of the country’s response to the lack of generation capacity, along with ambitious new build and refurbishment projects which are set to cost the country billions of dollars.  While some had predicted that the crisis which currently faces South Africa and, indeed, most of Africa was predictable, there is no doubt that more proactive planning and forecasting, in addition to fiscal availability, would have helped avert, is not all, at least some of the worst of the fallout of the 2008 blackouts.

The theme of African Utility week this year is ‘smart power choices for Africa’ and this includes not only the issues surrounding the day to day running of a major utility, but also the planning and rolling out of projects which will ensure continued power supply to all.  

This year will be the best African Utility Week ever and we have an interesting and educational line up of events for this week.  Our pre-conference workshops on the 19 May offer an opportunity to expand your practical knowledge across a range of subjects – if you haven’t signed up for one of the pre-conference workshops yet, be sure to do so soon as space is limited.

The opening session of African Utility Week promises to provide expert insight into the challenges facing the global economic markets and the utility sector in particular.  For the conference sessions on 20 and 21 May, we have gathered together thought leaders from across the world to share their knowledge, experiences and vision and we encourage you to engage with the speakers, both during and after the conference sessions so that we are able to build a meaningful dialogue within the industry and across the continent.

On the 22 May the site visits offer a chance to expand your practical experience by joining one of our two post conference site visits and again, we’d like to encourage you to ask questions and share ideas amongst each other.

Every year we are happy to welcome visitors from across the globe to African Utility Week, and we hope that this year, you will leave the conference and exhibition having made new friends, renewed old acquaintances and having gathered a wealth of knowledge from all of the highly qualified and experienced stakeholders who have joined us.  

We wish you a very successful African Utility Week!

Nicholas McDiarmid, Publishing Editor, ESI Africa magazine