JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, March 30, 2022/ — The African Energy Chamber (AEC) is honored to announce the attendance and participation of Hon. Lamine Seydou Traore, Minister of Mines, Energy, and Water for the Republic of Mali, at Africa’s premier energy event, African Energy Week (AEW), which will take place from 18 – 21 October 2022, in Cape Town.

At AEW 2022, the Minister will provide insight into Mali’s high potential energy sector, making a strong case for investment in 2022 and beyond.

Despite signs of massive hydrocarbon reserves in Mali’s Taoudeni Basin and production successes in neighboring countries such as Mauritania, Niger, and Nigeria, the development of Mali’s oil and gas reserves has been slow. According to consulting firm RPS Energy, some five blocks which are being explored by Baraka Petroleum in Mali’s Taoudeni Basin could hold as much as 645 million barrels of oil and over 9 trillion cubic feet of gas which the country could utilize to meet its energy needs. However, due to a lack of investment in exploration and infrastructure development, Mali’s hydrocarbons remain unexploited.

As a result, Mali relies heavily on energy imports to meet its petroleum and power generation needs – a situation that is straining the country’s public finances. With diesel accounting for 45% of Mali’s power generation, the Ministry of Mines, Energy and Water is prioritizing investment as well as the participation of international companies to help boost exploration and production to ensure energy security.

Led by Hon. Traore, the Ministry is already making progress to address these challenges, pursuing knowledge-sharing partnerships with regional producers such as Egypt to exchange best practices on oil and gas exploration, production and monetization.

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The minister’s participation at AEW 2022 will only enhance these partnerships, as the minister networks and engages with regional, continental and international investors and oil and gas market players, promoting Mali’s lucrative oil and gas opportunities.

Meanwhile, on the renewable energy front, the ministry is also seeking to optimize international investments to accelerate renewable energy development, recognizing the role green energy will play in addressing both domestic and regional energy poverty.

With less than half of the Malian population connected to electricity and the country’s continued reliance on imports, the government has been implementing regulatory reforms to encourage public-private partnerships (PPPs) to boost investment in renewable energy deployment and electrification.

In this regard, partnerships such as the Access to Sustainable Energy Services initiative which the ministry is implementing with the Directorate-General for International Partnerships and the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries Fund for International Development have played a key role in improving access to electricity from just 16.6% of the Malian population in 2005 to 48% in 2019, according to the World Bank.

At AEW 2022, Hon. Traore will participate in panel discussions and high-level meetings to discuss the role PPPs play in expanding renewable energy deployment and increasing electrification across the continent.

“The AEC is impressed with the efforts being made by the government of Mali to boost the exploration of hydrocarbons because renewable energy alone will not provide the capacity required to meet growing demand across the country,” stated Tomás Gerbasio, Strategy and Business Development Director at AEW, adding that, “Platforms such as AEW 2022 will enable emerging hydrocarbon producers such as Mali to network with investors and raise the capital required to speed up the exploration and production of oil and gas reserves while also diversifying their energy mix through the deployment of renewables such as solar, wind, and hydrogen to sustain reliable energy supply in future.”

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At AEW 2022, Hon. Traore will participate in ministerial summits, panel discussions and high-level meetings with other African energy ministers to discuss the role hydrocarbons will play in accelerating the energy transition whilst addressing energy poverty across the continent. The minister will also discuss the part that Mali can play in positioning Africa as an international energy hub while working collaboratively to make energy poverty history by 2030.

AEW 2022 is the AEC’s annual conference, exhibition, and networking event. AEW 2022 unites African energy stakeholders with investors and international partners to drive industry growth and development and promote Africa as the destination for energy investments. Key organizations such as the African Petroleum Producers Organization, as well as African heavyweights including Equatorial Guinea and Nigeria, have partnered with AEW, strengthening the role the event will play in Africa’s energy future.

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