Now that JB is back home, what next? She’s running again as the only woman among five major presidential candidates in the May 2019 elections.
CGD Policy Blogs
Mobile phones provide a useful insight for energy: not that you can leapfrog a modern power system, but that most energy use happens out of sight. In fact, less than 1% of the energy needed for a smartphone is used by the phone.
Todd Moss, CGD senior fellow and executive director of the recently-launched Energy for Growth Hub, on why the Hub was created, how big the energy gap is, and why the tradeoff between residential and industrial energy isn’t really a tradeoff at all.
In the biggest step forward in US development policy since the creation of the Millennium Challenge Corporation and PEPFAR, Congress approved legislation to establish a new, modernized US development finance agency.
While energy advocates have mostly focused on the 600 million people in sub-Saharan Africa that lack access to electricity at home, the region’s power shortages are especially damaging to firms. Companies across the continent suffer from unreliable power supplies, affecting productivity, employment, and growth.
Eighteen months ago, we blogged here about Kenya’s superfast electricity connection rate. The country had grown from 27 percent to 55 percent access in just three years, putting themselves on a fast-track toward near universal access by 2020. While this lightning progress was exciting, new research suggests that aggressive expansion may come with downsides, too.
On July 30, Zimbabweans will vote for the first time ever without Robert Mugabe on the ballot. Even before election day, there are very serious concerns about the validity of the vote. Vanguard Africa’s Jeffrey Smith and I wrote in the Mail & Guardian about eight reasons to worry, including poll manipulation, voter intimidation, interference by the military, and more. In totality, these problems already skew the outcome so greatly that they likely have already invalidated the vote.
The bill, which would create a modernized US development finance institution, just passed the House. Todd Moss explains how the new agency could help the US step up energy investments.
The United States needs a bigger and better development finance institution. The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) is an overperforming federal agency, but is currently far too small and outdated to fulfill its mandate of catalyzing private investment in strategic emerging and frontier markets. We’ve been pushing for years to modernize US development finance, while the timing for a new agency is ideal right now. The bipartisan BUILD Act creating a new US International Development Finance Corporation (USIDFC) was introduced in both houses a few months back and the administration has signaled support.
Anyone who follows this blog knows I’m a big fan of the US electrification initiative Power Africa because of its national security, economic, and developmental benefits.