Quartz: Sub-Saharan Africa is still in the dark but North Africa will soon be selling power to Europe

Africa, particularly sub-Saharan Africa, has an electricity problem.

Even though the continent’s power generating capacity has slowly improved over the years, rationing, rolling shortages, and blackouts continue to hamper many countries development—including economic giants like South Africa and Nigeria. These cutoffs stunt economic growth, hindering small and large businesses alike as well as schools and hospitals.

Limited financing also encumbers power generation: African governments invest about $12 billion a year in the power sector, even though it needs an estimated $33 billion in 2015. By 2040 the African power sector will need $63 billion. As a result, the low access, poor reliability and high prices of electricity cost African economies an average of 2.1% of their GDP, according to the World Bank.

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