Eni In Further Africa Power Pledge
Eni signed a memo of understanding (MoU) September 24 with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) to improve access to sustainable energy.
"Improving access to energy, especially in Africa, is core to our values, and it is now an intrinsic part of our business. We invest more than half of our budget in Africa, boosting the domestic potential and promoting local development," said Eni CEO Claudio Descalzi. The company said it will develop business ventures to increase access to clean energy in the region, with Angola, Congo, Cote d'Ivoire, Egypt, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Mozambique, Nigeria, and Tanzania among the first countries slated for the initial roll out of the partnership.
UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner said: "UNDP and Eni's combined expertise, ability to innovate, and on-the-ground networks can enable better access to sustainable energy sources in Africa.”
Descalzi said Eni delivered 56bn m3 of gas to domestic markets in 14 countries in Africa in 2017 and, to date, had invested some $2bn in sub-Saharan Africa in building/revamping networks and power plants, supplying electricity to over 18 million people. New projects envisaged under the UNDP pact include photovoltaic (PV) plants (including floating ones), wind farms, and off-grid hybrid solutions.
Eni’s giant gas discoveries have enabled Egypt to decarbonise its power generation, and it is a power producer in its own right in Nigeria and Congo. However for two years now, Eni has failed to deliver on its announcements that it would double the capacity of its Okpai gas-fired plant in Nigeria to 960 MW; the 480 MW unit was opened 2005.
Separately CEOs of BP, Equinor, Shell and Total agreed September 24 to create a collaborative approach to human rights supplier assessments in the energy industry; the four companies say they recognise the importance of working with suppliers that respect human rights with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and key International Labour Organization (ILO) conventions. "The sharing mechanism across the participating parties aims to support the improvement of working conditions in our companies’ supply chains," they said.