“I am most excited and enthused by the leadership you (Modi) have assumed in the formation of an alliance of solar-rich countries, which you intend to launch on the sidelines of COP 21 (climate summit) in Paris next month,” the West African country’s President John Dramani Mahama said in his address at the India-Africa Forum Summit (IAFS) meeting here. “Ghana strongly supports your initiative and would indeed be one of the first to sign up to this initiative,” he said, adding that energy remained the greatest binding constraint to Africa’s development.
Stating that India also suffered its own challenges with access to power especially in the rural areas, he said that Africa and India have the most promise in using the free energy of the sun to transform the lives of their people.
“It is unacceptable and indeed a shame that many of the countries with the highest utilisation of solar power are located in temperate climates that have a relatively much lower level of insolation than India and Africa,” the Ghanaian president lamented.
Earlier in the day, Modi, in his speech, said that India wanted to see a genuine global public partnership that made clean energy affordable, provided finance and technology to developing countries to access it, and the means to adapt to the impact of climate change.
“I also invite you (African countries) to join an alliance of solar-rich countries that I have proposed to launch in Paris on November 30 at the time of COP-21 meeting,” he said.
“Our goal is to make solar energy an integral part of our life and reach it to the most unconnected villages and communities.”
All 54 African countries attended the summit with 41 heads of state and government, including two kings, present.