President Ruto urges global collaboration on Green Investments, renewable energy goals

President Ruto urges global collaboration on Green Investments, renewable energy goals

File image of President William Ruto. PHOTO| PCS

President William Ruto addressed the Italy-Africa Summit on Monday, praising Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni's pragmatic approach to global challenges and expressing gratitude for Italy's Mattei Plan, particularly its emphasis on energy security for Africa and the Mediterranean nations.

Ruto is attending the summit in his capacity as the Chair of the Committee of African Heads of State and Government on Climate Change (CAHOSCC). 

The Head of State emphasised the importance of moving away from fossil fuels and towards renewables, highlighting Kenya's pledge to increase renewable energy capacity from 3 GW to a formidable 100 GW by 2050.

Highlighting the challenges faced by Africa, including a lack of electricity access for 600 million people in sub-Saharan Africa, President Ruto called for mutually beneficial partnerships.

"Energy security remains a distant reality for approximately 600 million people in sub-Saharan Africa lacking access to electricity," President Ruto said. 

"This staggering number, often cited, represents half of our continent's population and exceeds the entire population of Europe by 150 million. Additionally, 1 billion Africans still lack access to clean cooking, emphasizing the urgent need to reshape our energy landscape for dignified lives and livelihoods."

He also mentioned initiatives like the Africa Green Industrialization Initiative and the Accelerated Partnership for Renewables in Africa, and invited Italy to participate in green investments.

“Africa's abundant renewable resources are key to decarbonizing and diversifying global supply chains,” he added. 

“Additionally, the continent's rich deposits of critical materials, essential for the development of modern technologies, present a unique opportunity for collaboration with Europe.”

President Ruto also urged Italy's active participation in an upcoming Investment Forum co-hosted with IRENA, seeking new opportunities and collaborative efforts. 

“We invite Italy to partner with us, including in the upcoming Investment Forum we will co-host with IRENA, where Italian companies and financial institutions can explore new investment opportunities and help us shape a policy and regulatory environment that works for all,” President Ruto said. 

Addressing debt issues, the President requested Italy's support during the G7 Presidency and emphasised market access in light of the EU's Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism. 

“African countries pay five times as much for our debt, driven by both real and perceived risk factors,” he said. 

“We must accelerate reform measures to the Global Financial Architecture, including

adjustments to debt treatment.”

Emphasising Africa's abundant renewable resources, President Ruto stressed the necessity of sustained focus on renewables while acknowledging the role of gas.

He expressed confidence in a new era of mutually beneficial cooperation, predicting stronger ties and shared prosperity in the Italy-Africa relationship. 


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