POWER-GEN Africa release Preliminary Conference Programme

POWER-GEN Africa has announced the preliminary programme for this year’s inaugural conference and exhibition. ‘Global Technology for Local Solutions’ is the theme of the event, which takes place from 6-8 November 2012 at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.

“Africa has a phenomenal need for energy to drive its economic growth and to meet the justifiable aspirations of a growing and urbanising population. Over such a large and diverse continent, these needs vary greatly as do the approaches to meeting the challenges and implementing solutions. POWER-GEN Africa will bring the industry together to encourage knowledge sharing and partnerships in order to advance these goals in sub-Saharan Africa,” says Nigel Blackaby, event director and director of conferences at the PennWell International Power Group, UK.

Industry experts from South Africa and Africa, the USA, Germany, Italy, Russia and further afield, will bring their expertise to bear upon a programme designed by an Advisory Board of African power industry experts, and which spans two different conference tracks – the Strategic Track and the Technology Track.

The event opens on Tuesday, 6 November with a joint keynote session with the co-located Renewable Energy World conference that is open to all attendees. Blackaby will deliver the introduction and opening remarks, followed by speakers Ms. Elizabeth Dipuo, South Africa’s Minister of Energy and Mr. Brian Danes, CEO of Eskom, South Africa.

This will be followed by a joint plenary panel discussion on ‘Powering Africa’s Growth – The Energy Challenge Ahead’, that will give industry role players, stakeholders and practitioners the chance to voice their views about current policies and the future direction of the power sector within sub-Saharan Africa. Confirmed speakers include: Lawrence E. Jones, VP Regulatory Affairs, Policy & Industry Relations, Alstom Grid Inc., USA; and Alexander Schwab, Senior VP, Market Management and Corporate Communications, Andritz Hydro, Austria.

Says Blackaby, “The plenary theme encapsulates the most pressing issue on the table for the region’s power industry. It’s a debate that will set the scene for the remainder of the conference and spark meaningful discussion about the practical implications of power generation to all corners of sub-Saharan Africa, the direction in which this is heading and the technology choices available.”

Thereafter the conference and delegates will explore the track most relevant to them.

Highlights on the programme include a look at Energy Security and Sector Regulation by the Strategic Track, and Steam and Gas Turbine Technology by the Technology Track.

The Strategic Track will delve into financial and investment issues, Planning & Operational Challenges and Industrial Power Generation. The Technology Track takes an operational turn to explore Flexible Power Generation, Fuel Quality, Operations & Maintenance and Emissions Control.

The third and final day of the conference will see the Strategic Track turning to the issue of Capacity Building, Skills & Training and The Challenge of Rural Electrification, while the Technology Track explores Lifetime Extensions & Retrofits, followed by Performance Optimisation.

Concludes Blackaby, “Regardless of each delegate’s area or level of involvement in the power industry, we are confident that this two-track programme covers all the bases as well as the points of interest, concern and opportunity for all role players in sub-Saharan Africa’s power generation industry.

“Delegates can moreover expect an event with a genuine focus on power plant development and operation, along with strategic and business analysis of the challenges and opportunities, and delivered in an environment that is supportive of learning, networking and the sharing of experiences.”

Certainly, the preliminary programme for POWER-GEN Africa reveals a line-up that is designed not to dwell upon the region’s challenges, which are well documented, but to provide a platform for the industry to move forward on the back of feasible, proven technologies and solutions, presented by leading technology and service providers from around the world.

Discounted early bird rates are available for conference delegates who register before 9 October 2012. Registration can be completed online at: www.powergenafrica.com. More complete information on the current, preliminary programme is also available on this website.



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