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African Leaders Positive About Participation in Decarbonization

Maritime Activity Reports, Inc.

May 11, 2023

Source: IMO

Source: IMO

Africa's abundance of solar, wind and thermal energy across the continent can place Africa at the core of the global decarbonization of maritime transport, the IMO conference on Low-Carbon Shipping in Africa heard on May 5.

Speaking at the Conference, held in In Mombasa, Kenya, and co-organized with the Kenya Maritime Authority, The Hon. Kwaku Ofori Asiamah, Minister of Transport, Ghana, said Africa is the key to speeding up global climate action on the Decarbonization Agenda. “With its young and growing workforce, vast lands and various natural resources, the continent has the potential to make an important contribution to tackle climate change. These assets could be crucial in driving global efforts to mitigate the effects of climate change, while creating new economic opportunities."

Xiaojie Zhang, Director, Technical Cooperation Division, IMO, called on African nations to "to make your voice heard, and to unlock the great potential the phase out of greenhouse gas emissions of international shipping can generate in Africa. "When IMO adopts this July a revised GHG Strategy with a clear phase‑out date of greenhouse gas emissions from international shipping, the global shipping industry will actively look at providers of alternative shipping fuels and African ports could become future energy hubs for low carbon shipping fuels.”

He emphasized the importance of carbon revenues that could be generated through an IMO economic measure - like a fuel levy - for financing port infrastructure, retrofitting capacity, or bunkering facilities across Africa.

Ambassador Nancy Karigithu, Special Envoy on Blue Economy, Kenya, highlighted the range of range of financing mechanisms, such as public-private partnerships, climate funds, and green bonds, to support the transition to low-carbon shipping. She emphasized the need for the transition in maritime to low-carbon shipping in Africa to consider the socio-economic dimensions of the challenge. "The transition needs to be inclusive and equitable," she said.

Roel Hoenders, Head, Air Pollution and Energy Efficiency, IMO, agreed that "setting an ambitious GHG reduction target at MEPC 80 will send a strong signal to the market and investors that maritime is ready to decarbonize - and this will bring new investments and new jobs to Africa."

The conference was organized through the IMO's Integrated Technical Cooperation Programme (ITCP) in collaboration with the Kenya Maritime Authority. Participants came from 49 African countries.

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