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AFREPREN/FWD Secretariat

Executive Summary

This report covers the activities undertaken by the AFREPREN/FWD Secretariat and its principal researchers during the October, 2000 - January, 2001 period. It highlights some of the challenges faced by the principal researchers in drafting their country reports, the progress made, and provides the workplan for the February - May, 2001 period.

The October, 2000 to January, 2001 period of the AFREPREN/FWD Research Programme can be described as one where substantial drafting of reports and proposals was undertaken.  This was especially true for the 3 core theme groups (Energy Sector Reform, Energy Services for the Urban Poor and Renewables and Energy for Rural Development) and for the Special Studies of Strategic Significance Theme Group.

Principal researchers in the 3 core theme groups (Energy Sector Reform, Energy Services for the Urban Poor and Renewables and Energy for Rural Development) worked on their short-term studies and prepared the first draft reports presenting the findings of their research work carried out between June and October, 2000.  In addition, the principal researchers prepared draft  journal articles for submission to international journals. To date, 14 journal articles have been prepared and two (2) accepted fro publication.

As for the Special Studies for Strategic Significance theme group, a special study report for Mauritius is complete and the Lesotho study is close to completion.  The call for proposals, sent out in mid year 2000 for participation in the theme group, resulted in the receipt of 22 proposals.  These were reviewed by the AFREPREN/FWD International Panel of Energy Experts and the AFREPREN/FWD Steering committee.  Following a review by Sida, 14 proposals were approved. AFREPREN/FWD has initiated seven (7) studies undertaken by senor researchers and policy makers from Mauritius, Botswana, South Africa and Zimbabwe.

Parallel to the core research program, the AFREPREN/FWD Network launched major training and capacity building initiatives in year 2000.  The core training activity was the provision of scholarships for seven (7) Masters Degree students in energy policy. The seven are now undertaking their course at the Univesity of Cape Town, South Africa.

In the October, 2000 to January, 2001 period, AFREPREN/FWD Secretariat in conjunction with respective national focal points organised 5 national policy seminars in the following AFREPREN/FWD member countries: Botswana, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Tanzania and Uganda. This brings the total of national policy seminars held to date to 7 out of the 10 that were planned for the year 2000.

On 12th - 16th November, 2000 AFREPREN/FWD held its Annual General Assembly. The objectives of the Assembly were to review the progress of the AFREPREN/FWD research programme, present the findings of AFREPREN/FWDs research work, and review AFREPREN/FWDs key research priorities and methodologies for the year 2001.

In the last semester of year 2000, the Network was able to prepare 2 journal articles that were accepted by international journals (6 other journal articles have been submitted to international journals), as well as 5 AFREPREN/FWD Working Papers, one newsletter and 2 AFREPREN/FWD Updates.

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