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Mena needs $316-billion to grow energy capacity

Mena needs $316-billion to grow energy capacity

Apr 9, 2014

A new report by Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation (Apicorp) says countries in the Mena region – Middle East and North Africa – will have to spend US$316-billion on utilities such as power and energy over the next five years if they are to keep up with the growing demands.

Energy is expected to surge 8.3% a year till 2019, which is reportedly three times the global average. Based on these figures, the region would have to install an additional capacity of 156 MW and new transmission and distribution infrastructure. The concern is, however, that energy project development could be hampered by perceptions of a declining investment environment in the region, due to recent political unrest, the study warns. It added that issues relating to the availability of fuel in Mena countries and global funding will also present challenges to growing their energy capacity.

According to the study, “investment of this magnitude offers great opportunities but will not be forthcoming unless key issues are addressed”. The three most vital issues are listed as investment climate improvement; fuel availability; and access to funding. “The challenges each presents are beyond the capabilities and resources of any public utility or private power developer,” the study states.

Authored by Apicorp senior consultant Ali Aissaoui, the research has highlighted the huge challenges that energy investments in the Mena region face.

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