Energy – the Key to Development
Frequent power cuts and rationing are an everyday occurrence for the Afghan people. Around 70% of households in large metropolitan areas have an electricity supply, compared with just 20% of households in rural regions, where three quarters of the population live. Under such circumstances, companies’ production capacity is limited, which means that barely any new jobs are being created and the economic growth so important to the country is failing to materialise.
A large proportion (over 60%) of Afghanistan’s electricity is imported; the country produces very little electricity of its own. Given the country’s plans for rapid electrification and low prices abroad, importing energy is currently the best option. And yet this situation also creates political dependencies. In the long term, it is necessary to strengthen Afghan electricity production and leverage the great potential of renewable energy to this end.
Since 2003, the German Government has been assisting Afghanistan to develop a sustainable energy supply. The focus in this context is on development and expansion, on rehabilitating the electricity infrastructure and on building systems for energy production from renewable resources. As well as seeking to expand the grid to encourage electricity imports, the Afghan Government’s national energy programme aims to boost national energy production from hydro, solar and wind power in future. At political level, support is also being provided to Afghanistan in the areas of strategy development, standardisation, training in the use of renewable energies and improvement of decentralised energy supplies using renewables.
For further information about our work in the priority area of energy, please see the project descriptions and the ‘Stories’ section.