Israel has officially joined a US-led initiative to link millions of Africans to electricity, with the “growing partnership” between the Jewish state and its neighboring continent described as good by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The ceremony was attended by US Ambassador to Israel, David Friedman; Power Africa Coordinator, Andrew M. Herscowitz and African dignitaries representatives of leading Israeli energy companies.
A memorandum of understanding was signed by Israel and the United States, which sees Israel join the United States Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Power Africa initiative, which is an international program whose goal is to connect 60 million households in Africa to the electric grid by 2030.
Different tools provided by Power Africa for electricity generation projects on the continent will be received by Israeli energy firms which include increased access to government officials, monetary grants, contacts with financing entities, professional and legal advice and feasibility surveys.
According to Netanyahu, “Every time that an African mother will turn on the light or turn on a heater for some water for her children, part of Israel will be there”. He conveyed hope that the “wonderful partnership” Israel and African nations have in common in the 1960s, which was derailed by conflict between Israel and Arab, was “now back on track in full force”, turning to the scripture to explain the vastness of the undertaking.
The pioneer of Israeli solar energy, Yosef Abramowitz said that the deal could lead “to billions of dollars of deal-flow for Israeli firms.” Energiya Global Capital is already working with the US and Israeli governments to deploy $2 billion in solar and wind installations in 10 countries in Africa over the next five years.