Interconnection: ECOWAS moving towards a real regional electricity market - JeuneAfrique.com

From 2020, fourteen of the fifteen member countries of the Community will be interconnected, prefiguring a real regional electricity market ... to which all citizens should finally have access, moreover at an affordable price.

Slowly but surely, the electricity grid interconnection project of the ECOWAS countries is progressing. From 2020, fourteen of the fifteen ECOWAS countries will be interconnected, compared to nine today. Only the Cape Verde islander will not be connected to its mainland neighbors.

To steer the integration of national energy networks into a unified regional electricity market, ECOWAS created, as early as December 1999, the West African Power Exchange System (WAPP) - better known under its name. English acronym WAPP, for West African Power Pool - an institution headquartered in Cotonou, Benin, which is now working to establish a regional electricity market.

60% of inhabitants without electricity

The aim of WAPP is to provide the people and businesses of the member countries with an egalitarian and reliable supply of electricity at a competitive cost within fifteen years. And much remains to be done to achieve this. Indeed, according to the latest statistical data from ECOWAS (published at the end of 2016), almost 60% of the 375 million inhabitants of the Community - and 77% of its rural population - do not have access to the electricity.

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