600 million people, 70% of the population of sub-Saharan Africa is without electricity.

On June 30, 2013 in Cape Town, South Africa, President Barack Obama announced Power Africa — an initiative to increase the number of people with access to power in sub-Saharan Africa.

Rooted in partnerships, Power Africa is working with African governments, the private sector, and other partners in sub-Saharan Africa to add more than 30,000 megawatts (MW) of cleaner, more efficient electricity generation capacity as well as increase electricity access by adding 60 million new home and business connections.


A Toolbox Approach

Power Africa is focused on removing the barriers that have long impeded or stalled energy project development across the continent and limited the number of people who have access to electricity.

To do this, Power Africa brings together the combined expertise and resources of numerous U.S. Government agencies, the World Bank Group, the African Development Bank, the Government of Sweden, and our host government and private sector partners. By offering this wide set of tools to partners, Power Africa’s “Toolbox” approach is helping to unlock the substantial wind, solar, hydro-power, natural gas, biomass, geothermal resources, and natural gas in the region to enhance energy security, decrease poverty, and advance economic growth.

Power Africa also works closely with African governments to remove constraints to investment and to promote and improve governance of a growing power sector throughout sub-Saharan Africa. Power Africa strives to increase regional, cross-border energy trading, while also working with partner countries and regions of Africa to meet critical energy needs and achieve energy security.

Power Africa includes the Beyond the Grid sub-initiative, which is focused on expanding rural electrification, and access to small scale and off-grid technology.

Prepared by the United States Agency for International Development.  For more information visit USAID’s website

More Resources


Power Africa Capabilities Statement

Power Africa an Overview