Principal Energy Specialist / Renewable Energy – African Development Bank (AfDB)

Principal Energy Specialist / Renewable Energy – African Development Bank (AfDB)

Full vacancy title: Principal Energy Specialist / Renewable Energy

Location: Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire. Position Grade: PL4. Position Number: 50093761

Posting Date: 27-Oct-2023. Closing Date: 26-Nov-2023

Principal Energy Specialist / Renewable Energy - African Development Bank (AfDB)
Principal Energy Specialist / Renewable Energy – African Development Bank (AfDB)

Principal Energy Specialist / Renewable Energy – African Development Bank (AfDB)


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Established in 1964, the African Development Bank (AfDB) is the premier pan-African development institution, promoting economic growth and social progress across the continent. There are 81 member states, including 54 in Africa (Regional Member Countries). The Bank’s development agenda is delivering the financial and technical support for transformative projects that will significantly reduce poverty through inclusive and sustainable economic growth.

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To sharply focus the objectives of the Ten-Year Strategy (2023 – 2032) and ensure greater developmental impact, five major areas (High 5s), all of which will accelerate our delivery for Africa, have been identified, namely: energy, agro-business, industrialization, integration and improving the quality of life for the people of Africa.


The Vice Presidency for ‘Power, Energy, Climate and Green Growth’ is a Sector Complex focusing on the Bank’s Ten Years Strategy, High 5s priority of “Light up and Power Africa”. The complex’s objectives are

  1. to develop policy and strategy; (ii) to provide deep sector technical expertise to the Regions by gathering pool of experienced individuals who can be consulted for their expertise on complicated transactions; (iii) to develop new financing instruments; (iv) to act as spokesperson to represent the Bank with external stakeholders on all aspects of “Light Up and Power Africa”. The Complex will focus on areas of Power systems, policy and regulation, renewable energy, and Climate and Green Growth.
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The Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Department has the broad objective of promoting the development of renewable energy – both large and small scale – and promoting energy efficiency along with clean cooking.

More specifically, the department is mandated to (i) function as a one-stop source / hub for renewables programmes/projects, energy efficiency and clean cooking (ii) focus on “enabling market development” with an emphasis on developing new approaches / areas (e.g., mini-grid programmes, thematic or country focused funds) and play a lead role in establishing region- or country-specific programmes (iii) mobilize concessional resources as part of the structuring of blended finance solutions for projects and, programmes.

The Department also hosts the Desert to Power (DtP) Taskforce. The DtP initiative aims to accelerate economic development in the Sahel region through the deployment of solar technologies at scale. Specifically, DtP proposes to deliver electricity to 160 million people on-grid and 90 million off-grid and to add solar energy generation capacity of up to 10 GW through a combination of public and private interventions.

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The initiative covers 11 countries (Burkina Faso, Chad, Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, and Sudan). The initial rollout will focus on the G5 Sahel countries (Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, and Niger). It aims to develop and implement electrification program based on solar power generation including grid based, mini-grid and off-grid access scale up for households, social and economic infrastructure including energy for productive uses.


The Principal Renewable Energy Specialist will play a lead role across a range of activities linked to the development, financing, and deployment of renewable energy projects, including a coordinating role in the context of the Desert to Power Taskforce. The job holder will focus on (i) the identification, preparation and implementation of bankable renewable energy generation projects, including both grid-connected and decentralized technologies (ii) support the design and implementation of both public and private sector initiatives, including investment facilities; (iii) support Regional Member Countries (RMCs) in particular in the Sahel with designing investment scale-up programs to attract private sector players, along with the mobilization of concessional resources and implementation of innovative blended finance solutions; and (iv) more broadly coordinate the various activities undertaken in the context of the Desert to Power initiative.


Under the overall supervision and guidance of the Division Manager – Renewable Energy, the Principal Renewable Energy Specialist will perform the following:

Coordinate the various activities of the Desert to Power Taskforce, ensure regular engagement and communication with internal and external partners including the country focal points, project implementation units and prepare regular updates on the implementation of the initiative.

Prepare, appraise, negotiate, and supervise Desert to Power projects.  These include solar generation plants, transmission and distribution, regional transmission interconnections, public-private partnership projects, and electricity access projects. S/he will actively participate in overseeing implementation of energy operations with the aim to enhance quality and accelerate implementation.

Assist regional member countries in structuring renewable energy and energy access scale-up programs, including Independent Power Producer (IPP), green mini-grids and solar home systems scale-up programs, engaging with relevant stakeholders on aspects of enabling policy and regulatory environment.

Lead project origination and business development activities, with a view to developing a pipeline of sustainable energy investments to which AfDB’s full range of financial instruments, including concessional finance could be applied.

Contribute to the preparation of knowledge and analytical work for to inform country-focused strategy work as well as new operations in renewable energy.

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Undertake any other task that the Division Manager or Director may assign.

COMPETENCIES (skills, experience, and knowledge)

  1. At least a master’s degree in Economics, Finance, Business Administration, Engineering, Energy or related subjects.
  2. Have a minimum of six (6) years professional experience at project level, broad knowledge of various energy sub-sectors, including renewable energy technologies and business models.
  3. Proven ability to interact competently with, as well as to assess and provide technical advisory services to, both public and private sector stakeholders in the renewable energy space.
  4. Experience in Multilateral or Development Bank / Development Financial Institutions operations, preferably in an African context is an added advantage
  5. Good understanding of public and private sector financing, experience in resource mobilization and structuring of blended finance solutions.
  6. Experience in forging and managing relationships with a variety of stakeholders – local organizations, governments, and financing institutions.
  7. Demonstrated track record in the management of energy projects
  8. Demonstrated professional experience in African context
  9. Full knowledge of the principles of project cycle and project implementation.
  10. Strong interpersonal and client orientation skills, with proven experience in building and managing teams.
  11. Ability to communicate orally and in writing effectively in French or English, with a good working knowledge of the other language.
  12. Competence in the use of Bank standard software (Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint); Knowledge of


Should you encounter technical difficulties in submitting your application, please send an email with a precise description of the issue and/or a screenshot showing the problem to: HR Direct [email protected](link sends e-mail)

Apply for this position: Principal Energy Specialist / Renewable Energy – African Development Bank (AfDB)

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To apply for this position, you need to be national of one of AfDB member countries.

Applicants who fully meet the Bank’s requirements and are considered for further assessment will be contacted. Applicants should submit a concise Curriculum Vitae (CV) and any additional documents that may be stated as required. The President of the African Development Bank reserves the right to appoint a candidate at a lower level.  The African Development Bank is an equal opportunities employer. Female candidates are strongly encouraged to apply.

The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) does not ask for payments of any kind from applicants throughout the recruitment process (job application, CV review, interview meeting, and final processing of applications). In addition, the Bank does not request information on applicants’ bank accounts. The African Development Bank Group declines all responsibility for the fraudulent publications of job offers in its name or, in general, for the fraudulent use of its name in any way whatsoever 




Simon Tyrus Caine

Simon Tyrus Caine is a solar energy expert with more than 10 years experience in the solar sector. Simon has worked and lived in more than 5 countries. Simon has been involved in solar installations, solar project development, solar financing as well as business development in the solar sector. At SolarEyes International, Simon manages content development and day to day operations of the organisation.

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