On March 10, 2023, the Minister in charge of Energy and Water of the Republic of Angola Mr. Joâo Baptista BORGES and the President of the Commission of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) Ambassador Gilberto DA PIEDADE VERISSIMO inaugurated the Regional Center for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency CEREEAC.
The mission of the Center is to ensure the coordination of the implementation of the policy of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) in the field of renewable energy and energy efficiency and to promote the creation of an integrated and inclusive ECCAS market for the associated products and services.
The opening ceremony was attended by members of the Angolan government, national and international bodies, technical and financial partners (Austrian ambassador, UNIDO, IRENA, AfDB, EU) and senior officials of the ECCAS Commission.
After the virtual presentation of the building housing the CEREEAC before and after the rehabilitation works, the participants to the opening ceremony followed seven speeches of circumstance, notably those of the President of the ECCAS Commission, the Ambassador of the Republic of Austria, the Representatives of IRENA, UNIDO, AfDB, the European Union, the Governor of the Province of Luanda and the Speech of inauguration of the headquarters of CEREEAC.
In their various speeches, the speakers welcomed the creation of this Center, which will increase the level of electricity production from renewable sources (access to clean energy).
During his speech, H.E. the President of the ECCAS Commission, Ambassador Gilberto Da Piedade VERISSIMO, on his own behalf and on behalf of His Excellency Mr. Ali BONGO ONDIMBA, President of the Gabonese Republic and current President of the ECCAS, expressed his sincere thanks to His Excellency Mr. João Manuel GONÇALVES LOURENÇO, President of the Republic of Angola, for all the efforts made for the successful completion of the process that led to the realization of this great project. He continued his speech by recalling the paradoxical context of Central Africa in the field of energy, a region endowed with immense energy resources that are poorly exploited, and which faces a significant shortage of energy, which does not allow it to develop its economy. He pointed out that the creation of this center is one of the answers to this paradox.
The President of the ECCAS Commission expressed the gratitude of ECCAS to the strategic partners who accompanied the process of creation and establishment of the center, in particular UNIDO, IRENA and the Government of the Republic of Austria.
The number 1 of the ECCAS Commission closed his speech on the one hand, by inviting all development partners to support, continue and strengthen their support to enable the Central African region to achieve the operationalization of CEREEAC and on the other hand, by reiterating the commitment of ECCAS to make every effort to ensure the operationalization of this Center.
Mrs. Romana Konigsbrun, Ambassador of the Republic of Austria welcomed the creation of this Center, which will increase the level of electricity production from renewable sources. She confirmed the financing by the Government of her country of the project of the first operational phase of the CEREEAC, and invited the other partners to bring multiform supports to the CEREEAC for its operationalization.
In their various speeches, the representatives of the partner organizations expressed their appreciation to ECCAS and to the Government of the Republic of Angola for having made this CEREEAC creation project a reality on the ground. Unanimously, they wished, for the success of the operationalization of the center, to work together in order to lay a solid foundation for building a greener, stronger and more resilient Central Africa.
In his speech, the Minister of Energy and Water of the Republic of Angola thanked ECCAS and the technical and financial partners who spare no effort to accompany the Central African States in responding to the problems of access to modern energy services for the population.
The Minister said that in terms of benefits to ECCAS member states, the Center provides for the deepening of cooperation relations in the field of renewable energy, increasing the production of electricity from renewable sources, as well as the interconnection of power lines in the respective territories, cross-border electrification of localities and towns, close cooperation and neighborly relations between member states, through the development of infrastructure that will boost economic activities and contribute to the strengthening of existing friendly relations, among others.
He closed his speech by appealing to all technical and financial partners present to continue to support this emerging center so that by 2030, universal access to modern energy services for the population is ensured, with a view to the emergence of the Central African region.
Continuing his speech, the Angolan Minister in charge of Energy and Water expressed his sincere thanks to ECCAS and to the technical and financial partners who spare no effort to accompany the Central African States in responding to the problems of access to modern energy services for the populations.
The ceremony continued with the cutting of the symbolic ribbon and the discovery of the commemorative plaque followed by the visit of the building rehabilitated by the Angolan Government.
Finally, a working session between H.E. the President of the Commission and the strategic partners UNIDO, IRENA closed the activities in the premises of CEREEAC
The ECCAS Commission will have realized one of the solutions to the problem of energy supply in general and specifically the supply of electrical energy to the population.
Note that the headquarters agreement of the center was signed between the ECCAS Commission and the Ministry of External Relations of the Republic of Angola in December 2021 and the center is located at the following address Area Operacional do Gamek km 9, grafinil, rua das antenas, Municipio de Viana.