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In Madagascar, less than three percent of people living in rural areas have access to electricity. The island’s region of Sava is renowned for its vanilla production, but the potential benefits are far from fully reaped due to chronic energy shortages. In order to tackle this problem, UNDP, through its GSB initiative, helped forge a partnership among three large electricity producing companies (France’s EDF, Germany’s RWE and Canada’s Hydro-Québec) to provide affordable electricity to Madagascar’s vanilla-producing area, as well as surrounding villages. With a total investment of US$19 million, the participating companies will use new technology and distinct pricing structures for small- and medium-sized enterprises, government and villages, generating a return of 17%. In addition to injecting new energy into one of the most profitable sectors in Madagascar, the project will increase access to education, health, water and sanitation for rural populations and will reduce reliance on diesel and forest wood.

In terms of new electricity code adopted in 1998, Jiro sy Rano Malagasy (Jirama) became a limited liability company, although it was to remain under state ownership for the immediate future. Private investment in the country's power sector is now possible.

Jirama, the state run energy and water supplier, is currently being privatized, and the company is diversifying energy-generation sources in order to increase supplies and reduce costs, thus tackling two factors that have long handicapped mining and other industries. The privatization process of the company involves the rehabilitation of installations, and, although thermal power plants are believed to be numerous, there is a need for hydroelectricity. Also, within the privatization process of the company, there is believed to be a need for electricity market liberalization, especially in production.

In 2007 Madagascar's electricity production was 1.045 billion kWh and its electricity consumption was 071.4 million kWh.

Key Figures

  • Electricity Produced: 1.045 billion KWh (2007)
  • Electricity Consumed: 971.4 million KWh (2007)
  • Electricity Exported: 0 KWh (2008)
  • Electricity Imported: 0 KWh (2008)

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