27 Nov 2015

NCCR researcher presents at TRAPCA conference

Dr Kateryna Holzer, an NCCR post-doctoral fellow, presented a paper at the 10th annual conference of the Trade Policy Training Centre in Africa (TRAPCA), held in Arusha, Tanzania, on 19-20 November.

The conference topic was ‘Energy as a Determinant of Competitiveness’. Kateryna Holzer’s paper ‘Regulatory aspects and public international law issues of the construction of cross-border electricity networks’ explored existing deficiencies of the regulatory environment for the construction of cross-border electricity transmission lines.

Government regulations at a national, regional and international level play a crucial role in the expansion of cross-border electricity networks and the enabling of electricity trade over long distances.

The need for proper regulations in the electricity sector is especially felt in sub-Saharan Africa, where only 32% of the population has access to electricity. The lack of regulatory incentives for private companies to invest in the expansion of electricity infrastructure is a major barrier to electrification. The poor electricity infrastructure also hinders exploitation of the large potential that sub-Saharan Africa has for the development of renewable energy.

The paper highlights the problems of national legislation and regional cooperation in sub-Saharan Africa and defines the scope provided by public international law for liberalisation of the investment regime and creation of incentives for investments in cross-border electricity infrastructure projects.

TRAPCA is a joint initiative of the Eastern and Southern Africa Management Institute (ESAMI) of Tanzania and Lund University of Sweden, with funding from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA). It aims to build capacity in trade policy matters in least-developed countries in sub-Saharan Africa. TRAPCA offers a master of science programme in international trade policy and trade law, various academic courses and a forum for the exchange of knowledge.

TRAPCA annual conferences provide an opportunity for scientific exchange with representatives of the African trade community and regional integration institutions, European, American and African academics and trade practitioners, as well as TRAPCA students and faculty.

The World Trade Institute provides academic support to TRAPCA. WTI academic staff and researchers regularly participate in TRAPCA scientific events and teach on the TRAPCA master’s programme.