Malawi attending energy Congress high-level government-to-government dialogue in Netherlands

By Burnett Munthali

Minister of Energy Ibrahim Matola says the energy congress Malawi is attending in Netherlands is one of those opportunities for the country as it facilitates high-level government-to-government dialogue and brings together businesses and communities of all sizes.

According to the Minister, he had the opportunity to meet with key leaders from around the world who have expressed interest in helping Malawi achieve its energy targets.

On April 22, 2024, Matola participated in the opening of the 26th Energy World Congress currently being held in Rotterdam,  organized by the World Energy Council. The event brings together over 200 C-suite speakers and more than 70 Ministers.

Matola in Netherlands

“In today’s unpredictable, turbulent and fast-shifting world, the 26th World Energy Congress in Rotterdam will be the most important energy convening of the next decade” said Matola. 

The Congress being held under the theme ‘Redesigning energy for people and planet’, is an impact-focused content programme of 60+ sessions built on the collective insights and experience of the Council’s unique global network of over 3,000 member organisations.

Energy powers computers, transportation, communications, cutting edge medical equipment and much more. For developing nations, the need for reliable and affordable energy is more fundamental. It can improve and even save lives.

Energy is a foundation stone of the modern industrial economy. Energy provides an essential ingredient for almost all human activities: it provides services for cooking and space/water heating, lighting, health, food production and storage, education, mineral extraction, industrial production and transportation.

Malawi is among the least electrified countries in the world. Only 7-12% of the population are connected to the grid while the rural electrification rate remains below 2%.

Malawi’s electricity grid has remained vulnerable to sudden power cuts, and demand consistently exceeds supply.

Recent rolling power cuts followed the passages of cyclones Ana in 2022 and Freddy in early 2023, which caused floods and landslides, and damaged road infrastructure and cable networks.

Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) said in a notice dated November 11 2023 that the temporary load shedding programme would only affect domestic customers. The load shedding programme showed that some customers that were categorised into three groups experienced a three-hour blackout.

Grid electricity is the main source of modern energy in Malawi. The major sources of electricity are hydropower and thermal.