Association Webinars: Covid-19: An Obstacle or an Opportunity for Energy Transition in Developing Countries


The global energy transition from fossil fuels to renewables is a fact regardless the effects of covid-19 to the society and economy. For some this is the pivotal moment to advance clean energy and intensify the efforts capitalizing the re-start of the global economic systems. On the other side, conditions such as the declining in oil prices following the OPEC price war and fall in oil demand, might make the shift to renewables less favourable for policymakers.

Lockdowns all over the world have resulted in lower energy demand, creating concerns to most developed countries' energy generators having to deal with unused capacity. That said, countries such as South Africa, with historically constrained supply and demand supply mismatches, might find this period as the most appropriate to make crucial decisions and prioritize potentially maintenance. How can South Africa recover from the problems that the electricity sector had before the lockdown? How can the country and similar countries use the time in a positive manner to promote a more "just" energy transition amidst the storm of inequalities that the strict lockdowns have intensified? Should stimulus packages include renewable energy investments? In all big shocks there are winners and losers, what about now?

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Professor Roula Inglesi-Lotz is an Associate Professor of Economics at the Department of Economics at University of Pretoria, South Africa , as well as the founding and current President of the South African Association for Energy Economics (SAAEE).


Dr. Lardo Stander is acting Divisional Head: Economic Intelligence Division at the City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality, South Africa.

Mr. Deon Joubert is a Corporate Specialist in Finance and Economic Regulation at Eskom (the South African electricity public utility).*in his personal capacity - not representing the utility

Mr. Ntumba Katabua is an investment officer at the Johannesburg Office at the AFD - Agence Francaise de Developpement (AFD) with a focus on financing infrastructure projects in the energy sector.

Ms. Lungile Mashele is an energy specialist at the Development Bank of Southern Africa, a development finance institution with operations in sub-Saharan Africa.


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