Stanbic Chews Energy Challenges Facing Botswana

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Stanbic Bank Head Client Coverage, Mr. Sheperd Aisam

Stanbic Bank Head Client Coverage, Mr. Sheperd Aisam

Stanbic Bank Botswana hosted captains of the Energy sector at a conference during which they discussed the current power challenges facing Botswana & the region. Held on the 13th of October 2015 at the Lansmore Masa Square in Gaborone, the bank’s Corporate and Investment Banking (CIB) division lead yet another first in the market initiative targeted towards leveraging the capacity, reach and scale of Standard Bank Group in Africa to engineer solutions and provide direction to resolving the energy challenges.

Head of Client Coverage for CIB at Stanbic Bank Botswana said as a stakeholder in the Botswana economy they found it imperative to get the decision makers and game changers in the energy sector talking about how to collaborate together to resolve the challenges facing Botswana and the region.

“Power and Infrastructure is one of our core focus sectors in Corporate and Investment Banking and we have built domestic capability and expertise around this intent supported by Standard Bank Regional Power and Infrastructure teams that do business on the continent,” said Aisam.

“Our passion for Africa and the commitment we have to Botswana and our domestic client base gives us the legitimacy to foster, create and nurture proactive partnerships to change the face our country and our continent”.

The conference saw industry experts from Standard Bank Group share insights with key players in the local industry. Key stakeholders of the bank were able to convene, offer updates on relevant issues, share expertise, brainstorm solutions and network with each other. Key topics of discussion included power evacuation; sustainable energy mix; capital raising for power projects and future of renewables. There was also an in-depth discussion on how governments and the private sector can collaborate towards improving the situation through infrastructure development, thus allowing for sustainable power generation.

The power and infrastructure sector has been overwhelmed by poor implementation and workmanship resulting in numerous failed projects and delays. Botswana has had to rely on electricity imports mainly from South Africa to meet demand in recent years, due to a lack of reliable generation capacity. Looking into the future, growth in imports are expected to slow as the country resolves its energy supply issues and benefits from lower oil prices.

“Persistent power shortages throughout Southern Africa have begun to affect the way in which we conduct our businesses and daily lives. With the majority of the power issues relating to capacity and development, we believe that the groups of people we have targeted are poised to come up with the best possible solutions.”

Guests invited to the conference consisted of members through the entire value chain, from generation, transmission, Independent power producers (IPP’s), DFI’s and some multilateral lenders.

“The region has significant energy challenges which the Bank sees as opportunities for all stakeholders to participate in finding a solution. We need to work together to create platforms for learnings to be shared.  We have a lot of potential to become an energy exporter right here in Botswana and we have to be bold and courageous and act visibly fast to monetise this opportunity and make energy shortages a concern of the past,” said Aisam.

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