African Development Bank President Akinwumi Adesina, who took over in September, said he’s aiming to eliminate Africa’s energy deficit by 2025 by mobilizing $55b of investment, Naijda247 reported.

About 620m people in sub-Saharan Africa don’t have access to electricity, according to data from the International Energy Agency. Demand for energy is soaring, with a 45% jump between 2000 and 2012, according to the IEA.

In a two-day debate on “New Deal for Energy in Africa,” hold in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, the continent’s largest development bank said the plan will significantly raise its support for energy projects and that its partners should also scale up efforts.

Adesina served as Nigeria’s minister of agriculture and rural development before being chosen to lead the development bank. The deal is the first initiative he’s announced in his new role. The bank spent $2b on energy projects in 2014, with $650m in power generation. Over 80% of the generation projects were renewable energy.

Participants discussed a host of potential political, social and economic issues around transformative partnership for Africa’s energy development. These included policy and regulatory frameworks, resource mobilization, on and off-grid energy solutions and access to low-income segments of society.
Others include access to clean cooking energy solutions, strengthening and transforming utilities, as well as how to manage mix of renewable and non-renewable energy, according to AllAfrica.com.