Powering Africa’s Future: The Continental Power System Masterplan

Powering Africa

In line with the vision of a united African energy future, the Continental Power System Masterplan (CMP) is a comprehensive initiative.

It involves over 100 African stakeholders working to establish a fully interconnected power grid for the continent.

It addresses the electricity deficit by promoting the well-balanced sharing of affordable, reliable, and clean energy resources.

Upgrading Africa’s electricity infrastructure is essential to meet the anticipated threefold increase in energy demand by 2040.

Enhancing and modernizing Africa’s electrical infrastructure is vital to address the continent’s increasing energy demand, set to triple by 2040. 

This surge is attributed to rapid industrialization, urban migration, rising household incomes, and the impact of climate change.

Crucial investments in resilient and efficient power grids are needed to meet this escalating energy demand.

The CMP could support vulnerable populations, foster sustainable economic growth, and attract investment. 

Additionally, the CMP could contribute to the development of Africa’s industrial and manufacturing capacity, particularly in clean-energy technologies. 

Moreover, it may help reduce the import burden, exceeding 20% of GDP, by promoting the use of efficient technologies in various sectors, including agriculture.


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The plan aims to physically connect Africa’s power systems, creating the African Single Electricity Market (AfSEM) for a population exceeding 1.3 billion.

Additionally, the establishment of the African Single Electricity Market (AfSEM) and the physical interconnection of Africa’s power systems are crucial steps toward ensuring secure, reliable, and affordable energy access continent-wide.

The CMP is expected to catalyze sustainable economic growth in Africa, making the continent more attractive for investment. 

By establishing a unified power grid, the plan aims to reduce Africa’s reliance on energy imports and enhance its industrial and manufacturing capacities, including clean-energy technologies. 

The plan also underscores the importance of green energy investments and global cooperation for sustainable international development.

Power Africa is at the forefront of developing new power generation and connecting millions in sub-Saharan Africa to on-grid and off-grid power. 

Despite localized successes, electricity access in Sub-Saharan Africa is progressing slowly, with a focus on achieving affordable and clean energy for all.

The Africa Electricity Grids Explorer, an open data platform, offers the most comprehensive and current information on electricity grids in Africa. It aims to improve data availability and support efforts in modernizing grid infrastructure.

The African Union and partners are collaboratively working on a unified, competitive continental electricity market, aiming for secure, reliable, and affordable electricity. 

They urge international financial institutions to mobilize private capital for projects supporting vulnerable populations and sustainable economic growth.

Crucial initiatives, including the African Development Bank’s “Light up and Power Africa”,  seek to improve electricity access and drive economic development in Africa.

Electrification in rural areas, as a part of the plan, has demonstrated a notable increase in female employment, highlighting its potential for fostering inclusive economic development.

In conclusion, achieving a united African energy future is within reach. A connected continent powered by sustainable energy can unlock Africa’s full potential for global leadership.

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