The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the Southern African Development Community’s Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (SACREEE) have signed a memorandum of understanding to collaborate on increasing the deployment renewable energy projects with a special focus on decentralised technologies across countries in Southern Africa. The two parties will also combine to catalyse policy development, capacity building programmes and regional events to attract investments in the area. Further, the two parties will organise activities under the Africa Clean Energy Corridor in the areas of renewable energy resource assessment, long-term planning, as well as investments, policy, regulatory and institutional frameworks in line with achieving the goals set out by the Paris Agreement.

IRENA and SACREEE look to implement the Southern African Investment Forum to improve access to sustainable finance in the region. The forum will be part of IRENA’s contribution to the Climate Investment Platform which has been developed to boost investment maturity and access to finance for renewable energy projects. The forum will facilitate networking between projects, project developers, and potential financiers and investors.

Southern Africa has had a huge improvement in electricity infrastructure over the last decade. This can be attributed to a strong commitment from SADC to tap into the region’s vast renewable energy potential. Consequently, the total share of green energy in power generation has risen from 23 per cent in 2015 to about 39 per cent in 2018.