PAST Event – EXPERT DISCUSSION: The Africa-EU-China Hydrogen Industry Circle
The European Institute and the Institute for China-Europe Studies had the pleasure of organising the Expert Discussion on “The Africa-Eu-China Hydrogen Industry Cycle”, which took place on Thursday 26 October 2023 from 14:00 to 18:00 at EIAS, rue de la Loi 26, Brussels, Belgium.
Date: Thursday 26 October 2023
Time: 14:00 – 18:00
Venue: EIAS, rue de la Loi 26, Brussels
The Africa-EU-China Hydrogen Industry Cycle
Against the backdrop of the adoption of green hydrogen as a pivotal component of the global race to carbon neutrality, industrialization, job creation and the broader commitment to sustainability, this event in the format of a closed-door expert roundtable discussion highlighted Africa’s significant potential for green hydrogen production. With the aim of helping establish partnership models among public and private stakeholders from Africa, EU and China, the discussion focused on challenges and opportunities, as well as the required resources and finances in the planning and implementation phases of related projects.
The event follows the European Union’s announcement in May 2022 of its objective to produce 20 million tons of green hydrogen by 2030 (including half to be imported), as well as the presentation in November 2022 of a report commissioned by the European Investment Bank and CGLU Africa calling for 50 million tons of green hydrogen to be produced in Africa by 2035. The roundtable discussion precedes the COP 28 in Abu Dhabi where Africa, the EU and China will need to provide further commitments on climate change policies while upholding the fight for common prosperity and poverty reduction.
There is now a strong case that the twin objective of decarbonization and (re)industrialization of both Africa and Europe – and the expected benefits in terms of economic development and mitigation of migrations – can be enabled by the combination of hydrogen infrastructures and industrial hubs leveraging mass-scale competitive green hydrogen supply from renewable-rich Africa, building on the Chinese industry’s considerable competitive solar PV and electrolyzer capacity – and its stated intention to invest in such capacity in both Africa and Europe.
The discussion featured two workshops respectively on Resources & Production and on Industry & Finance. They were composed of short presentations by panel members, interactive exchanges between panel members and Q&A with participants. Proceedings will be drafted as well as an agenda for further institutional action reflecting consensus views emerging from the event.
13:30-14:00 Welcome coffee and registration
14:00-14:05 Foreword by organizers (EIAS, ICES)
14:05-14:25 Welcome addresses
- Hakima El Haite, former Minister of Environment of Morocco, UN Adviser for Zero Waste
- H.E. Tokozile Xasa, Ambassador, Embassy of the Republic of South Africa
- Changlin Gao, Minister Counsellor for Science and Technology Affairs, Chinese Mission to the EU
14:25-14:45 Presentation of the EIB-sponsored study on Africa’s Extraordinary Green Hydrogen Potential
- Matthieu Crest, Partner, Corporate Value Associates
14:45-15:15 Presentation on the Chinese PV and electrolyzer industries and discussion on bankability issues
- Thierry Lepercq, President, HyDeal
15:15-16:15 Workshop #1 – Resources & Production
Africa’s hydrogen resources and plans: government strategies on mass-scale green hydrogen as a key to energy security and industrialization, production and infrastructure projects developed by energy firms.
- Moundir Zniber, CEO, Gaia Energy
- Gabrielle Gauthey, Senior Vice-President for European Public Affairs, TotalEnergies
- Wim Damme, Head of Hydrogen & Ammonia Trading, Envision
Moderated by: Lin Goethals, Director, EIAS
16:15-16:45 Coffee break
16:45-17:45 Workshop # 2 – Industry & Finance
Construction, engineering and financing of mass-scale competitive green hydrogen: technology and equipment (solar photovoltaics, wind, electrolysis), engineering and construction, debt and equity financing and the pathway fossil fuel parity
- Mohamed El Hamed, Senior Advisor to the President of BNM, Islamic Republic of Mauritania
- Hugues Seutin, Director, Hyfinity, Vinci Construction
- Christopher Tan, Vice-President, Power China Eurasia
Moderated by: Thierry Lepercq, President, HyDeal
17:45-18:00 Closing remarks and action plan – partnership models among public and private stakeholders from Africa, EU and China
- Thierry Lepercq, President, HyDeal
18:00-19:00 Networking reception
Photo Credits: Pixabay