For many developing countries cooking and heating needs in rural areas are met by traditional cookstoves reliant on biomass fuels. This month, GVEP International was invited to present at a Clean Cookstoves Workshop aimed at engaging the support of Government of Malawi .
On April 11, the US Embassy hosted a Clean Cookstove Symposium in Malawi which GVEP International was invited to present a session on assessing the national cookstove market. The symposium was part of a programme spearheaded by the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves which aims to mobilse support worldwide for action to address the cooking energy needs of millions of poor households.
Eight African countries have signed on so far as Implementing National Partners with the Alliance, including Ethiopia, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda from Eastern Africa. GVEP has just conducted assessments of the markets in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania on behalf of the Alliance.
As well as bringing together stakeholders in the improved cookstove sector in Malawi, the symposium sought to persuade the Malawi government to agree to develop a national strategy.Topics discussed in the one-day workshop included a review of the cooking situation in Malawi, the scaling up of improved stoves and the roles governments can play and a key analysis factors in action planning.
GVEP’s contribution was a presentation on Market Analysis: Past Experience and Planning for a Malawi Business Model. Daniel Macharia, GVEP’s Programme Manager under the Developing Energy Enterprises Project, said: “Lack of vision has contributed greatly to stagnation of a sector that impacts over 90% of developing country populations. The clean cookstove goal will only be achieved if respective Governments are to own and appreciate the role of the sector by having a country strategy that addresses the needs in a holistic approach. It is on this basis that Market Assessment is a crucial step for any strategy to bring out critical gaps, how they relate to each other and the best way to address them.”
Members of the Malawian Government’s energy ministry were present at the workshop and agreed in principle to take the leadership of the process in Malawi to drive the process forward.
Over the next few months, it is expected that the Malawi government will sign up to the Global Alliance and catalyse the process toward a national strategy on clean cookstoves.