Emerging market clean energy investment slid as Covid-19 spread, BNEF

Despite a record year for energy transition investment in 2020, investors have invested $67 billion less in clean energy in emerging markets than in wealthier countries. That's the conclusion of a new study by U.K.-based consultancy BloombergNEF (BNEF). »The data suggest that as the Covid 19 pandemic spread, investors rushed to withdraw from less developed markets to refocus on wealthier countries,« analysts said.
According to the report, investment in less developed markets declined by 10 percent from 2019 to 2020 as financiers invested more funds in traditionally lower-risk OECD countries. »This represents a big change from previous years, when these fast-growing economies attracted the bulk of new funding.«
In 2020, for example, developed countries received $262 billion, or 57 percent of the total global investment in the energy transition. Developing countries accounted for $195 billion (43 percent). In 2019, emerging economies still accounted for the majority of funding, and in 2017, about 59 percent of investments went to developing countries. »Investors' willingness to invest in the poorer parts of the world flagged in 2020 as the pandemic spread,« said Luiza Demôro, head of energy transition research at BNEF.
Renewable energy investment declined 9 percent in emerging markets from 2019 to 2020, while it increased 24 percent year-over-year in developed countries. China tops the list with an overall score of 2.40 (out of a maximum 5.0). »While the country maintains the most coal-fired power plants in the world, it is also the largest market for wind and solar energy,« BNEF said. India ranked second with a score of 2.35, followed by Croatia at 2.15 - the country has set a goal of meeting about 63.8 percent of its energy needs from renewable sources in 2030.
Taking into account only power-related scores, »India finished top of the table, followed by Chile and mainland China.« Chile originally set a goal of having 20 percent of its electricity come from renewables by 2025, but reality caught up with it: The target was already exceeded in 2020, with a share of 25 percent.

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