African oil and gas as well as the abundant deposits of coal and the unlimited sunlight thanks to the huge desert in most parts of Africa present unlimited potential to power Africa and provide the hydrocarbon supply–demand balance.
It is estimated that about 18% of global oil production is currently taking place in Africa as more countries continue to discover oil and natural deposits in their territories.
African oil projects have attracted substantial investment thanks to their cost competitiveness versus those in other regions, mostly in Middle East.
Energy is a key component in powering the ambitious growth of Africa as noted by the local governments through the African Union. 19 African countries are significant producers of oil and gas, with the list increasing giving the increasing discovery of oil and natural gas in Africa. In some of the African countries like Libya, Sudan, Nigeria, Angola, South Sudan among others, the oil revenue accounts for a significant part of these governments’ revenues and represents a prime mover for employment, domestic power development, and, in many cases, infrastructure development (for instance, schools, hospitals and roads). Most of the companies doing exploration of oil and natural gas in Africa are international oil companies, which have fared well in Africa. The solar power is also a significant provider of power to drive the growth of the local economies. A good number of countries have either invested heavily or given incentives to the private sector to invest in renewable sources of energy, mostly solar.
Experts estimate that the current power production in Africa is not sufficient to power the ambitious growth plans for the continent as well as provide energy to the surging population. The private sector could play a big role in the realization of the power Africa agenda by taking advantage of most incentives from governments to invest in renewable sources of energy. On the same vein, emphasis should be placed on tracing sustainable sources of oil and gas with a view to address the rising demand for powering the manufacturing future of Africa as well as drive the infrastructural development agenda.