Somalia’s energy sector has suffered from over two decades of neglect and lack of planned investment. The huge resultant deficit in terms of universal access to affordable modern sources of energy currently inhibits the country’s ability to achieve significant social development and limits sustainable economic growth. The systemic weaknesses of the energy sector are reflected in the exorbitantly high tariff of US$1.0 per kilowatt hour. This creates gross inequalities with only a small segment of Somali population able to afford grid connectivity. The impact of the conflict is also evident in the fact that the energy mix in Somalia is sharply skewed towards locally accessible charcoal and firewood as the main sources of energy.
In view of this, Hayaan’s energy policy experts consider the obstacles to improving equitable access to require realistic targets in the following areas: diversifying the energy mix, financing the energy sector, and employing an integrated set of interventions that address institutional and political barriers. To facilitate this, the institute is developing strategies to fill the policy/capacity gaps by means of regulatory regimes and the promotion of broader public-private partnerships for improving access and diversifying the energy mix.