Lisbon, Portugal, 4 June – Investment in renewable energies in Africa in 2008 remained low, with Angola set to change its focus from ethanol to sugar production and Mozambique on the verge of being overtaken by neighbouring Tanzania, according to a United Nations (UN) report.
In Africa investment in the renewable sector totalled 780 million euros last year, which was a 10 percent rise year on year, the “Global Trends in Investment in Sustainable Energy 2009” report noted.
The report said that in 2008 progress was made in government policies and some activity in terms of investments in renewable energy across Africa.
However, in sub-Saharan Africa, and despite official aid increasing over the last few years, foreign financing mechanisms are needed to reduce poverty and improve living conditions and thus investing in renewable energy is not a priority.
In Angola Brazilian industrial group Odebrecht has set up a sugar cane processing factory and plans to shift its ethanol production to sugar when it starts operating, at the end of next year.
The company plans to sow its first harvest from May-August and harvest it from September-December of 2010.
As for Mozambique, it may be overtaken by neighbouring Tanzania as in September 2008, the UK-based Cams group, and Swedish ethanol producer and distributor SEKAB announced their interest in the country, which has good land, transport facilities and the right investment climate to develop a stable biofuel industry.
The United Nations Environmental Programme report also noted that growing interest in sustainable energy in South Africa had had a positive effect on its neighbouring countries. (macauhub)