The Abuja Action Plan on Sustainable Hydropower Development in Africa launch

Bello Muhammad Goronyo Esq. Honourable Minister of State, Ministry of Water and Sanitation, Eddie Rich, CEO, International Hydropower Association, Minister of Power, Chief Adebayo Adelabu, Sadiq Wanka, Special Advisor to the Vice President of Nigeria on Renewables, Wale Shonibare, Director Energy Financial Solutions, Policy & Regulations at AfDB.  

Download the Abuja Action Plan on Sustainable Hydropower Development in Africa



Africa is a continent abundant with natural resources. This provides an excellent opportunity for hydropower development to reduce the significant gap between the supply of electricity and the demand from its growing population.

HydroPOWER Africa week, co-hosted by the International Hydropower Association (IHA), Mainstream Energy Solutions Ltd, The African Development Bank (AfDB), Sustainable Energy Fund for Africa (SEFA) and The Nigerian Federal Ministry of Power (MOP) welcomed over 70 organisations from around the world at two roundtables focused on progressing sustainable hydropower in Africa.

The first roundtable gathered over 100 senior representatives from Africa's energy industry to discuss what can be done to increase hydropower development in Africa. The high-level roundtable followed to discuss hydropower’s importance in the energy transition. The discussions were informed by highlights from the Africa section of the 2024 World Hydropower Outlook, which showed steady growth of hydropower in the continent, but well below what would be required to reach net zero by 2050.

Nigeria’s Minister of Power, Chief Adebayo Adelabu, addressed attendees on the back of the launch of the Africa section of the World Hydropower Outlook and focused on capturing the potential for hydropower for Africa’s clean energy transition.

Chief Adebayo Adelabu, Minister of Power, said:

“Blended finance solutions can unlock investment opportunities for hydropower in Africa. To move fast, you move alone, but to move far you have to move together. We won't harness our human resources if they aren't energised by our natural resources. We need foreign investments and can provide a guaranteed return. Let’s turn our hydropower potential into reality for all Africans.”

He remarked that the essence of this conference, representing a joint endeavour by African countries to harness hydropower’s potential for a renewable and sustainable energy future, underscores a common commitment to fostering an energy-rich and climate-resilient African economy for the 21st century.

Sadiq Wanka, Special Advisor of Nigeria’s Vice President on Renewables:

“Hydropower resources are not just useful for power generation but also water management, irrigation, flood control and providing job opportunities to close the workforce gap. Tapping into the hydropower potential in the continent will be fundamental and we need to provide key incentives and the structure to facilitate investors.”

The African Development Bank’s Director for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency, Dr. Daniel Schroth, added that “Hydropower is playing a crucial role for economies pursuing low carbon pathways because of its versatility as it can provide baseload, peak load and ancillary services, which are becoming increasingly important for the integration of higher shares of variable renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. He reiterated the Bank’s continued support for financing Africa’s hydropower development, as well as for the refurbishment of existing assets in the context of the Bank’s Africa Hydropower Modernization Programme”

The hydropower industry is ready, willing and able to step up to this challenge. The Abuja Action Plan on Sustainable Hydropower Development calls on governments and International Bodies to take the steps to incentivise hydropower development in Africa.

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