The UK government has announced plans to provide South Africa with technical and financial assistance through the form of grants to accelerate the development of the country’s green hydrogen economy.
Linked to the UK’s Partnering for Accelerated Climate Transitions (UK PACT) program, the assistance will help kickstart the development of projects while strengthening knowledge sharing and employment creation across the South African energy market.
The grant forms part of the UK government’s contribution towards the implementation of South Africa’s Just Energy Transition Partnership – an investment plan that aims to accelerate the decarbonization of the country’s economy – which the International Partners Group – a coalition comprising the UK, Germany, France the U.S. and European Union – is providing financial aid towards.
According to the South African Ministry of Higher Education, Science and Innovation, “The UK PACT support has already enabled the sharing of expertise, contributing to South Africa’s Hydrogen Society Roadmap, and has funded soon to be released work on the employment opportunities and skills that will be needed in South Africa’s green hydrogen economy.”
The UK’s financial assistance will be made in the form of grants and investments by the UK government and companies. Hive Energy, for example, will be investing $5 billion for the development of a green ammonia plant in South Africa – a development that will not only ensure energy security and decarbonization but will create employment opportunities for the local people.
On the technical, knowledge and expertise sharing side, South Africa is expected to benefit from the UK’s experience in developing the Tees Valley Green Hydrogen Hub with the UK’s Teesside University set to sign a Memorandum of Understanding to cooperate on green hydrogen skills development and academic cooperation with Stellenbosch University in South Africa.
The development follows H.E. President Cyril Ramaphosa calling for developed countries to provide African countries with financial assistance in the form of grants to help accelerate renewable deployment and ensure a just and inclusive energy transition.