“Business should be profitable but also serve society”
“The smart money is on East Africa,” says Lukas Duusema, CEO, Siemens Eastern Africa, in the run-up to the upcoming Future Energy East Africa conference and exhibition which is taking place in Nairobi, Kenya from 29-30 November. Siemens is a platinum sponsor for this long-running event.
“Africa’s new economic powerhouse is taking root in Eastern Africa, with Ethiopia and Kenya taking the lead, and Tanzania and Uganda reinforcing this emerging regional cluster of more than 300 million people,” says Mr Duursema.
He explains: “Ethiopia for example is fast becoming a regional powerhouse. There are huge opportunities in renewable energy, especially in wind, thermal and hydro and demand is increasing for efficient and sustainable infrastructure to support skills development and job creation. Siemens has been active in the region for decades, but it is not just about our past, it is about how we develop alongside society to grow a more inclusive economy. We are in Africa as an investor, employee and supplier of efficient technologies. Right now, for instance we are helping to increase the reliability of energy supply through an interconnector being built between Kenya and Ethiopia.”
The Siemens Country Manager for Kenya, Mr Johan Helberg adds that “the HVDC transmission link is one of the largest infrastructure measures in East Africa. The roughly 1,000 kilometers-long direct current transmission line, known as the Ethiopia-Kenya Power Systems Interconnection Project, will transmit environmentally friendly hydroelectricity from Ethiopia to Kenya.”
Earlier this year, during the World Economic Forum in May, Siemens signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Uganda to cooperate in the areas of power supply, industry, transportation and healthcare and to focus on infrastructure investments and partnerships between public and private sectors. Mr Duursema adds: “we are also in the process of setting up and expanding our East African footprint by making Ethiopia the HQ of our operations.”
Business should also serve society
“Siemens has been in Africa for 157 years and we want to support sustainable development with solutions and projects in Africa, for Africa,” says the Siemens CEO.
He continues: “a business always has an obligation to be profitable. However, it should also serve society, create value for society – not just in the short term but in a lasting way, for the benefit of future generations. At Siemens we call this approach ‘Business to Society’. We aim to contribute to local value creation and play a constructive role in shaping Africa‘s sustainable development through tangible and meaningful engagement.”
East Africa’s energy journey
Formerly known as the East African Power Industry Convention or EAPIC, which was a firm, favourite fixture on the region’s power calendar for the last 19 years, Future Energy East Africa, with the official support of the Kenyan Ministry of Energy and Petroleum, will once again host many of the region’s leading energy decision makers from 29 – 30 November 2017.
The event is recognised as being a distinctive gathering of stakeholders within the power value chain which includes governments, power generation companies, transmission and distribution companies, off takers, developers, investors, equipment manufacturers and providers, technology providers, EPCs, legal and consulting firms all with a shared goal of supporting the on-going implementation of finding lasting solutions to East Africa’s energy challenges.
Future Energy East Africa is organised by Spintelligent, a multi-award-winning Cape Town-based exhibition and conference producer across the continent in the infrastructure, real estate, energy, mining, agriculture and education sectors. Other well-known events by Spintelligent include African Utility Week, Future Energy Nigeria (formerly WAPIC), Future Energy Central Africa (formerly iPAD Cameroon), Future Energy Uganda, Agritech Expo Zambia, Kenya Mining Forum, Nigeria Mining Week and DRC Mining Week. Spintelligent is part of the UK-based Clarion Events Group.
Future Energy East Africa dates and location:
Strategic conference: 29-30 November 2017
Venue: Safari Park Hotel, Nairobi, Kenya