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OFID calls for intensified collaboration to fight energy poverty at Lisbon SEforALL Forum
Left: Al-Herbish with SEforALL CEO Rachel Kyte. Right: Al-Herbish speaks at the opening of the SEforALL ‘Market Place.’
Lisbon, Portugal, May 3, 2018. Speaking at the 4th Sustainable Energy for All (SEforALL) Forum in Lisbon, Portugal, Suleiman J Al-Herbish, Director-General of OFID – the OPEC Fund for International Development – reaffirmed OFID’s commitment to helping to eradicate energy poverty. Al-Herbish called upon the global community to intensify and accelerate the momentum of cooperation to achieve Sustainable Development Goal 7 (SDG 7): ‘Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all.’
Al-Herbish delivered his remarks at the opening of the ‘Market Place’, a platform for SEforALL partners to showcase their work and forge new connections. Al-Herbish highlighted OFID’s focus on energy, water and food-related projects – while ensuring the organization responds to the needs and priorities of its partner countries.
OFID has helped shape the global development agenda, said Al-Herbish, making particular mention of the Oil and Gas Industry Energy Access Platform (EAP) – a collaborative effort between OFID, the World Petroleum Council, Shell, Total, OMV and Schlumberger, among other partners. The EAP provides an opportunity to leverage the vast experience and resources of the global oil and gas industry in the fight against energy poverty.
Al-Herbish noted that while scalable solutions and growing commitments from governments and financiers toward delivering universal energy access were emerging, there was still much more to be done. “At OFID, we recognize the need to inspire new partnerships, ideas and investment in the quest for modern and affordable energy for all. Advocacy, operations on the ground and partnerships are the main pillars for scaling up energy access if SDG 7 is to be met,” he stressed.
In a separate Facebook live interview, Al-Herbish outlined OFID’s wider approach to alleviating energy poverty, which consists of global advocacy efforts, financing development projects across different sectors and continents, and forming partnerships with other development-related organizations in order to enjoy synergies and create a bigger and more sustainable impact.
On the sidelines of the Forum, Al-Herbish signed a US$70,000 grant agreement with SEforALL CEO Rachel Kyte. The grant enabled around 30 delegates from developing countries in Africa to attend the Forum, in line with OFID’s sponsorship in 2017.