The Côte d'Ivoire National Committee aims to promote sustainable energy development in Côte d'Ivoire, as a part of the World Energy Council’s energy vision. As a member of the World Energy Council network, the organisation is committed to representing Côte d'Ivoire's national perspective within national, regional and global energy debates. The committee includes a variety of members to ensure that the diverse energy interests of Côte d'Ivoire are appropriately represented. Members of the committee are invited to attend high-level events, participate in energy-focused study groups, contribute to technical research and be a part of the global energy dialogue.
Energy in Cote d'Ivoire
Investments in the energy sector are at the centre of the strategy for Côte d’Ivoire to become an emerging market. Côte d’Ivoire’s National Development Plan for 2016–20 aims to diversify the country’s economy, boost oil revenues, make explorations blocks more attractive to foreign investors, promote renewables and reach 100% energy access.
Up until two decades ago, the country was heavily reliant upon hydroelectric power and fell into an energy crisis when the electricity output from its dams was drastically reduced due to droughts. Since then, Côte d’Ivoire became the first country in sub-Saharan Africa to turn to independent power producers (IPPs) to meet energy demand. Allowing private firms to operate in this sector gave Côte d’Ivoire the ability to respond rapidly to its growing energy needs.
The growing economy of Côte d’Ivoire puts the current power supply under pressure. The government thus set goals to increase its power production capacity by 2020 to about 4,000 MW and 6,000 MW by 2030 to meet the rising demand. In addition, the country aims to play a central role as a net exporter in the West African Power Pool.
In its Strategic Plan for the Development of the Electricity Sector by 2030, the government identified 66 projects that will require significant investment from the private sector, including public private partnerships with Independent Power Producers, aimed at expanding power capacity production and modernising the transport and distribution of electricity throughout the country.
The critical uncertainties for the nation are not only its economic growth, but to ensure that this growth is sustainable in the long run, focusing on managing its natural capital and taking immediate action to mitigate the impact of climate change. On this front, regional integration and the use of hydro are action priorities that Côte d’Ivoire must continue to work on.
Sustainable cities for Côte d’Ivoire means curbing deforestation. This remains a critical uncertainty and a priority as, in 1960, an estimated 37% of the national territory was forest cover; in 2010 it was less than 14% - one of the fastest deforestation rates in the world. Because of their carbon-storing abilities, tropical forests play a key role in combating climate change. These forests also meet essential local needs by regulating temperatures, helping generate rainfall, and purifying the air and water, and they are essential to the well-being of rural communities.
Energy affordability is a significant critical uncertainty, as in 2017 prices jumped up nearly 40%. This could negatively impact economic growth and potentially cause another political crisis. The country needs to ensure that energy affordability is addressed sooner than later.
Economic growth remains a critical uncertainty because Côte d’Ivoire relies in part on the use of its natural resource base for its economic development. The stock of natural resources is believed to have diminished by 26% between 1990 and 2014. Several visible phenomena attest to this degradation, such as deforestation, the depletion of water reserves, and coastal erosion.
Regional Integration or market connection is not only an action priority for Côte d’Ivoire, but for all of West Africa. Currently these countries are working to complete the physical interconnections to send power across borders. It is anticipated that by early 2020s the most critical cross-border links will be in place, making it possible for electricity to flow throughout West Africa from countries with cheaper, cleaner and more abundant energy resources to those lacking them.
An action priority for Côte d’Ivoire is increasing its hydro power share of generation. As of 2017, some 80 percent of total electricity generation was generated by natural gas, 19% by hydropower and around 1% by renewables, according to the Ministry of Petroleum, Energy and Renewable Energy Development. In terms of hydropower, a series of investments are supporting government aims to lift its contribution to the energy mix to 26% by the end of the decade.
Energy Efficiency is an action priority as the government has set a target to reduce energy consumption in industry by 25% in 2030. Tackling energy efficiency will also help reduce the impact on the country’s natural resources and its expanding concern over deforestation.
Although Côte d’Ivoire power sector faces many challenges, including a poor transmission and distribution grid, soaring energy demands, gas shortages and an overreliance on an unreliable power source, it has been one of the most investor friendly countries in the sub-Saharan region. The government has actively sought to create a clear and robust legislative framework for private investment.