Accra, Sept. 24, GNA – Energy major Eni SpA
and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) are joining forces to
improve access to sustainable energy and help achieve the Sustainable
Development Goals (SDGs) in Africa.
A statement from the two institutions said the
partnership was the first of its kind between UNDP and a global energy company.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was
signed by Eni Chief Executive Officer Claudio Descalzi and UNDP Administrator
Achim Steiner during an official ceremony hosted by the Permanent Mission of
Italy to the United Nations on the margins of the 73rd General Assembly.
“Improving access to energy, especially in
Africa, is core to our values, and it is now an intrinsic part of our business.
We invest more than half of our budget in Africa, boosting the domestic potential
and promoting local development. Today’s MoU, a first for the energy sector,
underscores the credibility of our efforts and the soundness of our business
model,” Mr. Descalzi said.
Per the agreement, Eni will develop business
ventures to increase access to clean energy in the region and UNDP will use its
extensive development network in over 170 countries to foster an enabling
environment to implement the partnership and assess its sustainable impact in
Angola, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Gabon, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, and
Tanzania are among the first countries slated for the initial roll out of the
“The private sector is a strategic partner
that can help realize our vision for inclusive development, as outlined in
Agenda 2030 and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals,” said UNDP Administrator
Achim Steiner. “UNDP and Eni’s combined
expertise, ability to innovate, and on-the-ground networks, can enable better
access to sustainable energy sources in Africa.
He continued, “This partnership demonstrates
how we can work together to achieve the Goals, specifically on SDG 17 on
partnerships, 13 for climate, 12 for sustainable consumption and production,
and above all SDG 7 on affordable and clean energy.”
He also said UNDP will work to ensure the
success of the partnership in accelerating access to sustainable energy sources
in order to meet the social and environmental objectives envisaged in Agenda
Africa’s energy demands are poised to rise
with rapid urbanization and economic growth.
The 2030 Agenda and the 17 Sustainable
Development Goals (SDG), specifically SDG 7, calls for universal access to
affordable, reliable, and modern energy services, including clean fuels and
Eni projects will include electricity
production from photovoltaic (PV) plants (including floating systems), wind
farms, off-grid hybrid solutions, reforestation and clean cooking solutions.
As part of this partnership, UNDP will also
work to raise awareness for clean energy and sustainable business models, and
provide training and capacity building in recipient communities.
“In 2017, Eni delivered 56 billion cubic
meters of gas to domestic markets in 14 countries in Africa. To date, it has
invested a total of approximately US$2 billion in sub-Saharan Africa in the
construction and restoration of networks and power plants, supplying
electricity to over 18 million people. We are now launching new investments in
renewable energy across the continent,” Mr. Descalzi explained.
The MoU between Eni and UNDP follows the
launch in September 2017 of the Centre for climate and sustainable development
in Rome under the joint auspices of the Italian Ministry of Environment and the
Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO) to facilitate
sustainable development in Africa.