Association Webinars: Funding Power Capacity Additions in Africa


The African continent is expected to account for more than half the growth in population over the next three decades. Will its power sectors be ready to meet the existing and projected electricity demand needed to support economic growth and prosperity? There is a wide array of options, including local capital, utilities' internally generated cash, foreign direct investment, domestic public budgetary resources, and development assistance. All of the above are present across Africa and will need to be scaled up in the future.

This webinar will dive into the financing environment and funding options for adding power infrastructure in Africa. The discussion will focus on sources of funding, options for mobilizing domestic financing, effectiveness of contractual terms signed to date, and opportunities moving forward, taking into account economic and resource commonalities and differences across countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. At the end, we aim to distinguish what progress in financing power infrastructure has looked like in the last ten years from what it can look like in the next ten years.


Anna Shpitsberg is a director of global power and renewables at IHS Markit.

Ms. Shpitsberg specializes in power market development and conducts research and consulting on emerging trends, the evolution of regulation, and industry strategy as it relates to the power sector, globally. Additionally, she is expanding the geographic coverage of IHS Markit's power portfolio by managing the build-out of power system analysis in Africa and the Middle East. Prior to joining IHS Markit, Ms. Shpitsberg established the US Department of State's Power Sector Program (PSP), through which she partnered with and advised utilities, regulators, system operators, and energy ministries on power market reform, energy resource optimization and procurement, regional power market development, and renewable energy integration and financing. In this role, she designed, managed, and advised on projects across Africa, Asia, and Latin America, including Angola, Argentina, Cambodia, Chile, Guatemala, Mexico, Peru, and Vietnam. She also held positions at the US Department of Energy, the Rocky Mountain Institute, and Morgan Stanley. Educated in the United States, Ms. Shpitsberg holds a Bachelor of Science in finance from Binghamton University and a Master of Environmental Management from Duke University, with a focus on power systems and the energy-water nexus.


Philippe Benoit is an Adjunct Senior Research Scholar at the Center on Global Energy Policy at Columbia University SIPA. Philippe has had a distinguished career in energy, development, and climate policy. His experience spans a wide spectrum of regions, including the emerging economies of Asia and Latin America, developing countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, North America and Europe. He has over 25 years of experience in working on energy, finance and development in both the private and public sectors. From 2011-2016 Philippe served as head of the Energy Environment and Energy Efficiency Divisions at the International Energy Agency. In addition to his time at the IEA, he worked for over 15 years at the World Bank, including as energy sector manager for Latin America and the Caribbean, and at Société Générale as a director in the Energy Project Finance Department. He is also currently Managing Director-Energy at Global Infrastructure Advisory Services 2050, an independent consultancy.

Philippe has managed over 50 publications in the areas of clean energy, development and climate change while at the IEA and the World Bank. He holds a J.D. from Harvard Law School, a B.A. in economics and political science from Yale University, and a masters in trade law from the University of Paris.

Natznet Tesfay is executive director for research and analysis in Economics and Country risk at IHS Markit, focused on Africa.

Her areas of specialization include analysis of political developments affecting the offshore energy sector in West Africa, particularly Nigeria; commercial developments, especially in mining, energy, and infrastructure in East Africa; and piracy risks in the Gulf of Aden and Gulf of Guinea. Ms. Tesfay leads the development of the Africa risk indicator and horizon scanning infrastructure, drawing on a range of methodologies such as geospatial analysis and scenario modelling techniques. Natznet supports business growth across the continent, advising C-level executives on market entry, stakeholder engagement and risk management, and African governments on leveraging their natural resource potential for sustained economic growth. She regularly speaks in major media outlets, and at high-level conferences. Previously, she had advised on urban planning in megacities across developing countries, development of free trade zones in East Africa, foreign policy and mining sector in the Horn of Africa. Ms. Tesfay's degrees include a BA in Government from Harvard University and a MSc in Urbanization and Development from the London School of Economics.

Mohamed Rali Badissy is a scholar, advisor and international development advocate in the field of energy and climate finance. He currently serves as an Assistant Professor of Law at Penn State Dickinson Law, where his research focuses on the use of contract standardization and sustainable finance to accelerate the development of energy infrastructure in emerging markets.

Professor Badissy previously served as the Senior Attorney for Energy and Finance with the Commercial Law Development Program of the U.S. Department of Commerce, advising governments in emerging markets on commercial law reforms intended to catalyze private investment to increase energy access. Over the past decade, Mohamed has led energy sector reforms in more than 42 countries, and continues to serve as an advisor to governments, non-profit groups, and private developers

He is the principal editor for a series of open-source guidebooks for governments titled (Understanding Power Purchase Agreements, Understanding Power Project Financing, and Understanding Power Project Procurement) and a contributor to a handbook on the management of sovereign debt published by the African Development Bank (Understanding Sovereign Debt).

Mohamed began his career with the public international law group of Latham & Watkins LLP in New York and Dubai and as a law clerk to the Hon. William H. Walls of the United States District Court of New Jersey (Newark). While a law student at the University of Washington School of Law, he was awarded High Honors, Order of the Coif and Order of the Barrister and served on both the Moot Court Honor Board and the Pacific Rim Law & Policy Journal.


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