Statement at the signing ceremony of the Sustainable Energy Management Project support document

Apr 30, 2013

Statement was made by Ms. Naomi Kitahara, former UNDP Resident Representative, a.i. at the Ministry of Energy in Lilongwe.

  • Minister of Energy: Hon. Ibrahim Matola
  • Secretary for Energy, Dr. Winford Masanjala
  • Director, Department of Energy, Mr. Gideon Nyirongo,
  • Directors of relevant Departments and other Senior Government Officials,
  • UNDP colleagues,
  • Development Partners,
  • Members of the Press,
  • Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am very pleased that we have gathered here today to sign the new Project Document on Sustainable Energy Management with the Government of Malawi.

The provision of sufficient and reliable energy in Malawi to sustain its socio-economic development is a major challenge as noted in the MGDS II and the Economic Recovery Plan. The major energy source for the population in the country is biomass, which is not utilized sustainably, and which causes environmental, health and safety problems for the population. And the main source for electricity generation, which is only used by a small fraction of the population, is Hydropower, which is as of now insufficient for all domestic and industrial use, and thereby compromises the country’s productive capacity.

Increased use of affordable and clean modern energy at all levels will help Malawi achieve its Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and its socio-economic targets.

This Project Support Document provides a framework for UNDP’s assistance to the Government of Malawi for support to Sustainable Energy Management from 2012 to 2016. The project follows the Malawi Growth and Development Strategy II (MGDS-II) and United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF 2012 – 2016) priorities, builds on other national programmes in the sector, and focuses on the introduction and use of renewable energy resources and improved energy efficiency targeting the poor and vulnerable households in the country.

The aim of the programme is to facilitate a change process that will lead to a significant shift away from direct burning of wood to a cleaner, safer and sustainable use of modern energy in Malawi.

This is in line with the “Sustainable Energy for All” initiative – a global initiative championed by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon since December 2010, and that has the following global targets:

  1. Ensure universal access to modern energy services;
  2. Double the global rate of improvement in Energy Efficiency
  3. Double the share of Renewable Energy in the Global Energy mix.

The Sustainable Energy Management Project in Malawi has three main outputs, namely:

  1. Sustainable energy management is mainstreamed in policies and development plans at national and district level;
  2. Data and knowledge on renewable energy and energy efficiency are made accessible to decision makers at household, district and national level; and
  3. Improved coordination and implementation mechanisms for sustainable energy management.

Among other things, the Sustainable Energy Management project will assist in revising the Energy Policy of 2003 and related Acts; formulate a national renewable energy strategy; formulate a national strategy for energy saving technologies; implement pilot projects on innovative renewable energy and energy efficient technologies; establish a national platform for coordination of sustainable energy; and mainstream innovative renewable energy and energy efficiency considerations into District Development Plans in vulnerable districts.

The project will be implemented primarily by the Ministry of Energy but will also involve other stakeholders, for example the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Management, the Ministry of Economic Planning and Development, Malawi Energy Regulating Authority, ESCOM, the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development, Malawi Bureau of Standards, the Department of Trade and Industries, National Council for Science and Technology, Non-Governmental Organisations and the Private Sector.

The Sustainable Energy Management Project is expected to invest US$7,325,000 over 2013 - 2016. UNDP has already committed USD1.9 million, and further resources are being mobilized from the Global Environment Facility and the global “Sustainable Energy for All” programme.

In signing this project document we pledge our support and commitment to the Government for increased use of modern and clean energy services, which will help in tackle major socio-economic, environment, health and safety problems for the country and its vulnerable population.

I thank you very much for you

Contact information

Christina-Shorai Nyambalo
UNDP Communications Analyst
Tel: +265-999-563-407

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