African, Norwegian leaders discuss accelerated infrastructure development
40 speakers and more than 400 African and Norwegian leaders, including 30 ambassadors from Norway and Africa, discussed how to accelerate African infrastructure through Norwegian-African work, trade and growth at the Norwegian-African Business Summit in Oslo.
H.E. John Dramani Mahama, President of the Republic of Ghana, Mr. Børge Brende, Norway’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Dr. Fatih Birol, Chief Economist, International Energy Agency (IEA) were among the distinguished guests who participated in this day-long forum hosted by the Norwegian-African Business Association (NABA).
“More than 700 million people in Africa lack electricity and the continent needs more investments in renewable energy. So I am pleased to announce that Norway will contribute NOK 300 million to Green Africa Power, a new fund to stimulate private sector investment in renewable energy in sub Sahara Africa. Energy is a key to development and the private sector has a key role to play,” said Børge Brende, Norway’s Minister of Foreign Affairs. “With this commitment, we join the UK Government in financing renewable energy generation, reducing carbon emissions and improving the supply of clean energy to millions of people in Africa.”
“When people meet, knowledge is shared and opportunities appear. The conversations at the Norwegian-African Business Summit increase understanding of the African continent, and accelerate investments, partnerships, and growth in infrastructure in Africa. Infrastructure is what economies need to flourish,” says Eivind Fjeldstad, Managing Director of NABA. “We are proud to announce that NABA is opening an office in Nairobi, Kenya. Felix Osok will be the Regional Director for East Africa. This cements our commitment to Africa and the East African market where we will continue to open opportunities in oil and gas, aquaculture, forestry and wood processing.”
"Today is an opportunity to invest in Africa. The risks are not as high as perceived. It is smart business," says James Mworia, CEO, Centum Investments. "Investment in infrastructure, and especially power, is critical to enhancing the productive potential of Africa. At the same time, it is an opportunity to create numerous other investment opportunities and sustainably improve human welfare."
The President of the Republic of Ghana delivered a keynote address on the Summit’s theme “Mapping the African Infrastructure Landscape.” He showcased Ghana’s success story and the need for the international business community to support and encourage that development.