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LONDON (Reuters) - Power generation capacity in Africa will quadruple from 2020 to 2040, giving nearly a billion people access to electricity, the International Energy Agency (IEA) said in its first Africa Energy Outlook released on Monday.

Reform programmes are starting to improve efficiency and to bring in new capital, including from private investors, and grid-based generation capacity quadruples in our main scenario to 2040, albeit from a very low base of 90 gigawatt (GW) today (half of which is in South Africa), the West s energy watchdog said in the report.

This will help to push down the vast number of people in the continent without access to electricity.

The total number without access starts to decline in the 2020s and 950 million people gain access to electricity by 2040 – a major step forward, but not enough, the report said.

Much more needs to be done, it added.

More than half a billion people, mainly in rural areas, remain without electricity in 2040, the report said.

Much of the expansion in electricity will come from renewable energy, it said.

Looking at crude oil, the IEA said West African production was set to fall more than 12 percent between 2020 and 2040 at a time of fast rising domestic demand, squeezing the region s exports.

It said the current production level of above 6 million barrels per day (bpd) would fall to 5.3 million bpd in the 20 years from 2020.

Over the same time, demand for oil products including gasoline and diesel would double to 4 million bpd, a factor exaggerated by subsidised prices in some countries.

The result is to squeeze the region’s net contribution to the global oil balance, the report said.


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