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ECOWAS Status Report - Regional Overview

| 18 01 In recent years, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), comprising 15 Member States, iii has emerged as one of the most active and dynamic regional economic communities on the African continent. ECOWAS works across a variety of fronts to “promote economic integration in all fields of economic activity”, including industry, transportation, telecommunications, energy, and natural resources.1 Expanding access to modern, reliable, and affordable energy services is a key ECOWAS priority, prompting inter-state cooperation in crucial areas including capacity building, policy development and implementation, and investment. Over the past decades, the region has taken enormous steps toward defining its energy goals and establishing strategies to achieve them. Recognising the critical role that sustainable energy plays in catalysing social, economic, and industrial development across the region, ECOWAS Member States formally inaugurated the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE) in 2010, granting it a public mandate to promote renewable energy and energy efficiency in the region.2 ECREEE’s overall objective is to “contribute to the sustainable economic, social and environmental development of West Africa by improving access to modern, reliable and affordable energy services, energy security and reduction of energy related externalities.”3 To achieve these goals, the ECREEE Secretariat works with a network of National Focal Institutions (NFIs) in each Member State, as well as with key organisational partners, to support activities designed to overcome sectoral barriers and facilitate regional markets in renewable energy and energy efficiency. The ECOWAS Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Status Report supports ECREEE’s efforts to strengthen data collection and knowledge sharing by providing a comprehensive regional review of renewable energy and energy efficiency developments, market trends and related activities, evolving policy landscapes, investments in renewable energy, and the crucial nexus between energy access and gender. It draws on data from the ECOWAS Observatory for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECOWREX), as well as a broad network of contributors and researchers across the region. iii. Benin, Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Côte d’Ivoire, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo. Data Collection for the ECOWAS Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Status Report The ECOWAS Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Status Report presents up-to-date, reliable data and information on the sustainable energy sectors of the 15 ECOWAS Member States. Information compiled in the report is based on contributions from ECREEE, ECREEE National Focal Institutions (NFIs), REN21’s extensive international network, and a number of leading organisations and experts active throughout the ECOWAS region. Despite noteworthy advancements in data collection and valued collaboration with regional partners, significant data gaps remain. While effort was made to provide the most comprehensive overview of the region’s current sustainable energy sector, the scope and scale of the material presented here reflects these information gaps. The exclusion of any programmes, themes, sectors, or technologies reflects a lack of information, not a judgment on their importance to the region. The report serves as a both a benchmark for assessing the current status of renewable energy and energy efficiency as well as for expanding future data gathering initiatives in ECOWAS. OBJECTIVE OF THE REPORT REGIONAL INTRODUCTION

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