Siemens Energy’s ambitions in Angola’s power sector TEY_post_Thabo-MOLEKOA

We emphasise gas as a transitional fuel while advocating for power generation from renewables.

Thabo MOLEKOA Chairman and Managing Director, Southern Africa SIEMENS ENERGY

Siemens Energy’s ambitions in Angola’s power sector

May 8, 2024

Thabo Molekoa, chairman and managing director for Southern Africa of Siemens Energy, talks to The Energy Year about how Siemens Energy, as a company now independent of Siemens, aims to assist Southern Africa in its power sector and the ways in which the Angolan power sector can improve. Siemens Energy is an energy technology company.

How does the creation of Siemens Energy as an independent company assist Southern Africa in its power sector ambitions?
Siemens Energy was previously a division within Siemens until a carve-out in 2020, which was done so we could focus primarily on the energy transition opportunity. Part of this mandate allows us to focus on generating energy with reduced fossil-fuel emissions, along with distributing energy efficiently and decarbonising industries.
Our structure mirrors this focus. We emphasise gas as a transitional fuel, providing hydrogen-ready gas turbines and control systems, while advocating for power generation from renewables. In cases where renewables aren’t feasible, we promote gas as a transitional solution until alternative technologies mature.
After energy generation, our focus is transmission efficiency, and we have invested in technology for efficient transmission, particularly digital grids and related digital technologies. Moreover, our Blue portfolio aims to minimise emissions from transition-related products.
Collaborating with industrial clients facilitates industry transformation, especially in sectors such as oil and gas, where we offer decarbonisation and energy-efficiency measures. This underscores our core objective: facilitating the transition from high to low emissions for various clients, industries and countries.


What are the key improvement opportunities for Angola’s power sector?
While hydro dominates its power generation sector, electrification rates remain around 50%, indicating an underutilisation of the country’s abundant hydropower potential. I believe Angola needs a comprehensive energy transition roadmap that aligns visions and garners support for technological advancements and skill development.
Angola’s hydroelectric capabilities also present significant opportunities for green hydrogen production, a prospect ripe for exploration. Our aim is to facilitate Angola’s sustainable growth by showcasing decarbonisation possibilities for the oil and gas sector, as well as tapping into markets for green hydrogen and ammonia.
Siemens Energy in Angola has historically worked closely with the oil and gas sector, and has also played a pivotal role in addressing challenges in electrification and skill development, which are particularly vital in Southern Africa’s energy transition journey. Expanding electrification efforts is crucial, with a target to increase access from 51% to at least 80% within the next five years. This goal will be achievable through concerted efforts and strategic partnerships.

How important is training and capacity building for Siemens Energy?
A fundamental aspect of our expansion involves upskilling local talent to effectively service our customers. We’ve dedicated considerable resources to capacity building, training and upskilling to empower local professionals to meet customer needs. We started a workshop in Angola about 18 months ago. In every country where we increase our activity, we find we need a workshop of our own. Additionally, we leverage expertise from around the world to support areas requiring specialised knowledge so quality requirements and standards can be maintained. These efforts have enabled us to broaden our coverage significantly.

What are the key strategic pillars for the company’s growth in Angola?
We consider three pillars. The first one revolves around our oil and gas customers. It’s crucial to continue engaging in conversations with them regarding the energy transition and decarbonisation. We will maintain our commitment to providing them with excellent service while introducing new, more efficient technologies. That’s the first element.
The second element, which runs parallel to our engagement with oil and gas customers, involves making strides in decarbonising the oil and gas sector. Initiating discussions around decarbonisation efforts is essential, as it requires a fundamental shift in mindset before we can implement technologies.
The third pillar focuses on grid expansion. Our primary goal is to enhance electrification by prioritising grid expansion initiatives. Our pipeline projects will largely revolve around activating a renewed emphasis on grid expansion to bolster electrification rates.

Read our latest insights on: