Ivory Coast (2012)

Source: REEEP Policy Database (contributed by SERN for REEEP)

This policy & regulatory overview is not updated anymore since 2015. We decided to keep it online due to high demand but would like to make you aware of the fact that it might be outdated.

Energy sources

Total installed electricity capacity (2008): 1,218 MW
Hydro-electric: 49.8%
Thermal: 50.2%

Total primary energy supply (2007): 10,353 ktoe
Comb. Renew. And Waste: 75.1%
Crude Oil: 32.3%
Natural Gas: 12.8%
Hydro-electric: 1.8%
Electricity Exports: 0.4%
Oil Product Exports: 21.6%
More than half of the domestic energy needs are met by combustible renewable resources and waste, mainly biomass.
In 2009, total electricity production was 5,894 GWh, of which 2,117 GWh, or 35.9%, was from hydroelectric sources, 3,649 GWh, or 62.0% thermal, and 121 GWh, or 2.1% from biomass sources. The 288 MW Azito Power Station, in operation since 1999, is located in the capital Abidjan, and produces more than a third of the country‘s electricity. The construction of a third turbine in Azito has been delayed. The Ivory Coast's main hydroelectric plants include Ayame I and II, Kossou, Taabo, Buyo and Grah.
Biomass is the most common energy source, providing up to 75% of overall energy requirements, including: 
  • Fuel wood and charcoal for households, 
  • Energy for small restaurants, bakeries, and arts and crafts centres.
  • Agricultural and forest residues for steam and/or electricity in some agro-business companies and sawmills.
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Since 1994, the surplus of electricity production is exported thanks to inter-connection of the national grid with those of other countries in the sub-region, namely: Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Mali and Togo. Total electricity exports in 2009 were around 484.0 GWh.

The Ivory Coast is a net exporter of petroleum products, and an exporter of crude oil. Estimated oil production in 2010 was 44,880 bbl/day, and the country exported 4,675 ktoe of crude oil and petroleum products in 2009. The oil reserve of the country has recently been estimated at 100 million bbl.
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Extend network

As of 2009, the overall electricity access rate had risen to 47.3%. However, the rate is very low in rural areas and in peri-urban areas, where a considerable section of the population takes to under-subscription of electricity with a multitude of risks. The number of households with a subscription to electricity, in relation to the total number of households, is less than 20%. Similarly, basic social services like health, education or human hydraulic services have no access to electricity in electrified localities.

The transmission and distribution network of the country comprises roughly 15,000 km of lines, operating at 33 and 15 kV.
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Capacity concerns

The electricity sector is currently experiencing a financial disequilibrium due to high exploitation and investment costs, and inadequate revenues. Fuel prices have nearly doubled, leading to an increase in average operating costs from US$ 0.08/kWh to 0.15/kWh. At the same time, electricity rates were not adjusted between 2001 and 2008. US$ 84 million was lost in 2009 due to collection inefficiencies, although the collection rate has improved to 88%. In total, it was estimated that operational inefficiencies cost the sector US$ 150 million in 2009. Transmission and distribution losses in 2008 were estimated at 23.4%. Infrastructure improvements are seen as the most viable countermeasure to this decline, and the production, transportation and distribution facilities need to be rehabilitated to ensure good quality service. 

In rural and peri-urban areas, the low rate of access to modern energy services has a considerable influence on the quality of life for households, especially for women, particularly in terms of health (the difficulty of firewood and water collection chores, as well as harmful biomass emissions). In the commercial sector, a number of businesses have taken to self-generating, due to the unreliability of power supply from CIE, the national utility. It was estimated in 2009 that 15.1% of firms predominantly used power they generated themselves.
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Renewable energy

Solar energy
In the Ivory Coast, most schools and health centres in urban areas use electric solar water heaters. However, these are often malfunctioning, and when they are working, consume large amounts of electricity: approximately 2kW to heat 150 litres of water. In rural zones where electricity is not available, firewood is used to heat water. However, the Ivory Coast is well-endowed with solar energy, and using passive solar heating can meet hot water needs while reducing the use of firewood and electricity. Some PV systems have also been installed in the country through private initiatives and NGOs, in healthcare facilities, and some households. The solar potential in the country ranges from 2.0-4.5 kWh/m2/day, with average daily sunshine durations of 6 hours, indicating a moderate potential for the use of the resource.

Wind energy
There are no wind measurements available besides those for civil aviation compiled by the Société d’Exploitation et de Développement Aéroportuaire, Aéronautique et Météorologique (SODEXAM). These measurements, taken at 12 m above the ground, generally range from 1–2 m/s. San Pedro on the western shoreline and Korhogo in the North record wind frequencies between 20–35% for wind speeds above 6 m/s. Bouake in the Centre, and Tabou on the western shoreline are swept by winds with frequencies from 20–45% and speeds greater than 4 m/s. There are no other wind power projects known to date, except those in Touba and Korhogo.
Biomass energy
The anaerobic generation of biogas was experimented with in several pilot projects, but was not implemented in regular operation up to now. Currently, some private investors are applying for the authorisation to produce electricity from household wastes, especially in Abidjan. The main sources of supply for fuel wood are natural forests, savannah woodlands and tree and bush savannahs, productive farms and tree plantations. In addition, the production of bioethanol has been investigated in the country, using feedstocks such as sugarcane, maize and sweet sorghum. An estimated 120 ktoe/annum is available solely from bagasse in the North of the country.
The forest stand is 6.38 million hectares, including 4.2 million hectares of highly degraded forests and two million hectares of protected areas. Resources from agro-industrial residues, crops and plantations are estimated at over 4.3 million toe per year. They represent the most directly exploitable RE potential.
Geothermal energy
No study has yet been conducted into the geothermal potential, however, due to prevailing geological conditions in the area, the country is expected to have limited geothermal potential.
Four large identified hydroelectric sites remain undeveloped, with capacity ranging from 5 to 288 MW. Several other sites have potential for small plants with capacities of 0.5–5.0 MW. The potential identified in a study by Électricité de France in 1980 is a theoretical capacity of 46 TWh/annum, with an economically exploitable potential of approximately 12.4 TWh, i.e. 27 % of the theoretical potential.
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Energy efficiency

Privatisation of the energy and water sectors, and an increased emphasis on thermal production, are important policies being encouraged by the government of the Ivory Coast, but renewable energy is not being actively promoted.  However, the country is already using some solar energy and hydropower to generate electricity.

The residential sector is the most energy-intensive in the country, primarily due to the prevalent use of traditional biomass resources for cooking, lighting and other home energy services. Energy consumption per capita stood at 0.49 toe in 2009, and electricity consumption per capita in the same year was 187 kWh, above the average for West Africa (129 kWh). Savings have been identified in the industrial and service sectors of the country and the World Bank has financed projects previously to increase efficiency in these sectors.
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Electricity market
The Ivory Coast is one of the pioneers of Sub-Saharan Africa in private participation in the power sector. Since 1990, the country’s electric utility has been managed by a private operator. As of 2007, IPPs accounted for nearly two thirds of the total electricity production. 

Until 1990, the state-owned utility, Energie Electrique de Côte d'Ivoire (EECI), had a monopoly over electricity generation, transmission and distribution. By the end of 1990, due to poor performance and debts, EEIC management was taken over by Société d’Aménagement Urbain et Rural (SAUR) and Electricité de France (EDF) for a period of 15 years, with the contract renewable twice for three years. Compagnie Ivoirienne d’Electricité (CIE, was formed, with SAUR and EDF assuming 51% of the shares, while the remaining 49% was retained by the state. The management company operates the assets for a fee, but the responsibility of continued investment remains with the state. With the introduction of a private operator, the role of the EECI was reduced to oversee the technical operations of the CIE and implement the country’s rural electrification program.
In keeping with the overall reform, the government agreed the Ivory Coast’s and Sub-Saharan Africa’s first IPP project, a gas-fired turbine under the Compagnie Ivoirienne de Production d’Electricité (CIPREL).  Two years after the plan was commissioned, the government contracted a second IPP: AZITO. The 210 MW CIPREL project and the 288 MW AZITO project are both contracted under build-own-operate-transfer (BOOT) models, for a period of 19 years and 24 years respectively.
In 1998, EEIC was dissolved and three new institutions were created:
the Société de Gestion du Patrimoine du Secteur de l’Electricité (SOGEPE) to manage the finances of the sector,
the Société d’Opération Ivoirienne d’Electricité (SOPIE) to ensure long-term planning of the sector for future electricity capacity and fuel requirements, and
the Autorité Nationale de Regulation (ANARE), formed as a regulator to the sector.
Liquid fuels market
The management of hydrocarbons is ensured by semi-public companies, including the national oil company PETROCI (, which is in charge of oil development, and the Société Ivoirienne de Raffinage (SIR) which ensures regular supply of refined products to the market.
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The CIE is a vertically integrated monopoly, handling generation, management and distribution of electricity in the country. The IPPs in the generation sector sign Power Purchasing Agreements (PPAs) with CIE in its role as the sole transmission operator. It is interesting to note that the partners in CIE, i.e. EDF and SAUR, are also equity owners in both IPPs. While this equity involvement of parties on both sides of the PPA transaction may have facilitated project development, it could lead to conflicts if other parties wish to develop future IPP projects.

The state owns a 47.3% share in SIR, with various private oil companies, as well as the government of Burkina Faso. PETROCI is a government-owned institution with autonomous management, responsible for the exploration and production of oil and natural gas, as well as a dedicated service company.
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Energy framework

In the Cote d’Ivoire Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper 2009-2015, energy sector targets are set for 2013 and 2015. The overall objective set at the level of the energy sector is to ensure energy security, with a view to providing the population with energy accessible by all and at an affordable rate, with exportable capacity and which preserves the environment. To that end, it is also necessary to enforce law 96-696 of 29 August 1996, on the oil code, which governs the oil exploration and exploitation activities. The government has also set out a number of targets in the renewable energy sector, particularly for biogas utilisation. The targets include a 3% share of primary energy from renewables (excluding biomass) by 2013, rising to 5% by 2015. Also, a biomass-fired 60 MW project has been announced, in addition to two biogas-fired power generation projects, totalling 33 MW.

The efforts to meet these targets should consider the strengthening of hydrocarbon production capacities. Similarly, there is a need to ensure regular supply of the Ivorian market with petroleum and gas products. The attainment of this objective requires an increase in electricity and butane gas production, the development of a master plan on rural electrification (supplying 200 – 300 localities per year), and improved access to energy services. Furthermore, the intensification of the extensions of the grid in peri-urban areas is necessary for the connection of disadvantaged population groups, and the diversification of sources of RE, and active participation in the process of interconnection of sub-regional electric grids, will also aid the attainment of these targets.
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Energy debates

Several private enterprises are becoming involved in rural electrification after securing the approval of SOPIE, the principal contractor for the provision of electrical facilities. Several projects (development of household wastes, sustainable forest management etc.) are currently being evaluated to classify them as projects liable to be funded within the opportunities provided by the Clean Development Mechanism (MDP).

In 2011, the Ministry of Mines announced that a new 275 MW hydroelectric project was to be constructed near Soubre, in the centre of the country. The project is expected to be completed in 2015-2016.
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Energy studies

The country is member of  the West African Power Pool (WAPP) which works under the auspices of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), and is charged with managing the cooperation of the national electric utilities by designing a framework of cooperation, regulating power pooling, and determining the level of participation of each utility. 

A priority for WAPP was connecting the power grids of Nigeria, Benin, Togo, Ghana, and the Ivory Coast. A 146 km, 225 kV line currently runs from Abobo in the Ivory Coast to Elubo in Ghana, connecting the country to the rest of the West African power network. The Ivory Coast is also connected with Burkina Faso to the North, via a 213 km, 225 kV line.
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Role of government

The Ministry of Mines, Petroleum and Energy (, through its technical body named the Office for the Promotion of Energy Efficiency (Bureau des Économies d’Énergie) and through the Sub-Directorate of Energy Control and Renewable Energies (Sous-Direction de la Maîtrise de l’Énergie et des Énergies Renouvelables), ensures the promotion of energy efficiency actions and RE development actions. For this purpose, the two bodies jointly carry out the following:

  • Monitoring of the “Improved Stoves Popularization Program”,
  • Monitoring of power billing for public buildings in consultation with the Laboratory of Construction and Civil Engineering (Laboratoire du Bâtiment et des Travaux Publics) of the Ministry of Economic Infrastructures,
  • Monitoring of the use of residues in some industrial companies,
  • Monitoring of the activities of charcoal producers in cooperation with the National Centre for Agricultural Research (Centre National de Recherche Agronomique) of the Ministry of Higher Education and Research,
  • Monitoring of experimental solar stations in cooperation with the Research Institute on Renewable Energies of the Ministry of Higher Education and Research.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry also ensures control of wood and charcoal sub-sectors. The Ministry of Higher Education and Research coordinates the activities of the research centres involved in the energy sector, i.e. the Research Institute on Renewable Energies (IREN), the Tropical Technology Institute (Institut de Technologie Tropicale – I2T) and the National Centre for Agricultural Research (CNRA).


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Government agencies

The Clean Development Mechanism National Authority (AN-MDP) is responsible for evaluating and implementing CDM projects in the country. The authority is also responsible for the creation and adoption of a marketing plan for private sector participation in CDM projects, as well as the necessary legal and regulatory frameworks for such projects. Close Government agencies

Energy procedure

In July 2009, French carbon dealer ECOSUR received approval under the Kyoto Protocol's Clean Development Mechanism for a waste-to-energy carbon offset project in the Ivory Coast that it had submitted to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).   The Abidjan Municipal Waste-to-Energy Project is located in Bingerville, North of Abidjan, and is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the equivalent of more than 71,000 tons of CO2/year. Project owner Société Ivoirienne de Traitement des Déchets (SITRADE) will collect and treat 200,000 tons of urban waste per year using anaerobic digesters, and the resulting biogas will be used to produce electricity, while residual waste will be transformed into compost.

Despite the current lack of policies or frameworks for the promotion of renewable energy in the country, new regulations are being drafted by the Ministry of Mines and Energy in an effort to provide a better environment for the establishment of renewable energy projects.
The WAPP Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea Power System Re-development Project aims to, at this stage, create a business plan and an institutional development mechanism for the planned inter-connection of the involved countries' electricity transmission networks.
Caisse Francaise de Développement has recently loaned US$16.6 million to the country to finance a program to rehabilitate the dilapidated medium-voltage distribution network. The project is expected to be carried out through the CIE.
A number of pilot projects have been implemented through the Ministry of Mines, Petroleum and Energy for rural electrification by solar photovoltaics. The first phase involved the electrification of Gligbeuadji, Debo1, Dedegeu and Detroya, including the installation of twenty solar street lights. In addition, a joint project between the government and GEF, implemented through UNIDO, was prepared for inclusion in the 2011 public investment program of the country. The project involves the electrification of a further five rural localities, through a decentralised mini-grid, using solar energy.
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Energy regulator

The National Authority for the Regulation of the Electricity Sector (L’Autorité Nationale de Régulation du secteur de l’Electricité de Côte d’Ivoire, ANARE, is the state society responsible for energy regulation in the Ivory Coast. It was created on the 16 December 1998 and regulates the transport, imports and exports of electric energy to the state. Close Energy regulator

Degree of independence

The agency is now independent in authority and action, with no prior approval being required for any action undertaken by the agency. Funding primarily comes from tariffs imposed on regulated bodies and revenues accrued from the financial operations of the electricity sector. Close Degree of independence

Regulatory framework

The missions of ANARE are in four main categories:

  • Control of the electricity sector, its laws, payments and conventions through the control of the public electricity service (CIE) and Producteurs Indépendants d'Electricité (Independent Electricity Producers, PIE), and the control of activity within the natural gas sector of electricity production;
  • Payment for litigations against the state operators and consumers;
  • The protection of consumer interests by respecting public service obligations, in terms of the continuity and regularity of the electricity supply, and the quality of the service provided to the consumers;
  • Support and advice for the state and for electricity operators, as set out in the legislation n° 85-583 of the 29 July 1985, which organises the production, transportation and distribution of electric energy in the Ivory Coast.
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Regulatory roles

Since its formation, the regulator acts as an arbiter between the CIE and customers and is in charge of resolving disputes between stakeholders in the sector, including the IPPs.  ANARE also advises the state, but it has no tariff setting powers or mandate, both of which are still under the purview of the Ministry of Mines and Energy.  Close Regulatory roles

Energy regulation role

On the institutional level, the management of RE is incumbent on the Energy Directorate and is ensured through the Sub-Directorate of Energy Control and Renewable Energies. Several operators and institutions (ministries, research institutes and centres, etc.), are however active in this sector without genuine coordination. In 2005, the decision to establish a Renewable Energy Directorate (Direction des Énergies Renouvelables) within the Ministry of Mining and Energy has set a distinctive hallmark in the official RE development policy.

In addition, the government exercises some regulatory functions, either directly through enacting laws and regulations, and fixing tariffs for electricity, or, through agreements it concludes with sector operators. The SOGEPE (Society for Heritage Management of the Electricity Sector) and SOPIE are responsible, for the management of state assets, monitoring of financial management of the public services sector, including monitoring the financial stability,, as well as for the planning of supply and demand, project management work in the state sector, and monitoring the progress of energy development and rural electrification.
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Regulatory barriers

The development of RE is hindered by a lack of comprehensive planning in the Ivory Coast and the financial means to promote RE. The coming updates to energy regulation in the country from the Ministry of Mines and Energy need to be implemented. Currently, there are no specific regulations or incentives for renewable energy, nor any form of legislative framework.

Further development of electricity service access will create the need for better-defined and executed regulatory mechanisms.
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IEA Country Statistics 2009: [Accessed 28 July 2013]

IRENA (2010): "Renewable energy country profile: Cote D'Ivoire". Available at: [Accessed 28 July 2013]

IndexMundi: "Cote D'Ivoire oil - production - energy". [Accessed 28 July 2013]

MBendi: "Electrical power in Cote D'Ivoire". [Accessed 28 July 2013]

Africa Infrastructure Country Diagnostic (2010) "Cote D'Ivoire's infrastructure: a continental perspective". Available at: [Accessed 28 July 2013]

GTZ (2009): "Country chapter: Cote D'Ivoire". [Accessed 28 July 2013]

Eberhard, A. and Gratwick, K.N. (n.d.) "IPPs in Sub-Saharan Africa: determinants of success". Available at: [Accessed 28 July 2013]

West African Power Pool: "Power Grid". [Accessed 28 July 2013]

Ministry of Mines, Petroleum and Energy: "Renewable energy". (Translated with Google Translate) [Accessed 28 July 2013]

ANARE:, (Translated with Google Translate) [Accessed 28 July 2013] Close References