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Patents and clean energy technologies in Africa

Publication date:
R. Ondhowe
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Africa has a huge untapped potential for generating clean energy, including enough hydroelectric power from its seven major river systems to serve the whole continent’s energy needs, as well as great potential for solar energy, wind energy, geothermal energy etc. Although major hurdles exist also in the distribution of energy, this paper argues that there is potential for Africa to leapfrog existing fossil fuel energy sources and exploit clean energy from the outset to meet its developing needs. The report focuses on the patent landscape for clean energy technologies (CET) in the continent, as a specific geographical area which could greatly benefit from their use and technology transfer in this area. The study provides facts and evidence to evaluate the actual situation concerning patenting of CET in Africa. It helps to understand how the global and African patent systems can best be used and further developed to support and facilitate the technology transfer of CETs in Africa.