Country Profile
Monday, 12 August 2013 09:38

Country profile: Togo

An in-depth country profile on the Western African country of Togo.

In West Africa, between the eastern border of Ghana and the western border of Benin, lies a small strip of land, which extends gracefully south into the Gulf of Guinea. Togo, officially the Togolese Republic, covers an area of approximately 57 000km², with a population of approximately 6,7 million. Togo is blessed with a climate that provides excellent growing seasons. As a result, the country is almost entirely dependent on agriculture. Although dominantly tropical, the country’s length allows it to stretch through six distinct geographic regions. The climate varies from tropical to savannah. 

In terms of environmental issues, Togo is prone to deforestation, which is attributable to slash-and-burn agriculture and the use of wood for fuel. Water pollution also presents serious health hazards and hinders the country’s fishing industry, and air pollution is intensifying, especially in developing urban areas.

Togo is a member of the United Nations, the African Union, the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, the South Atlantic Peace and Cooperation Zone, La Francophonie and the Economic Community of West African States.

Summary statistics

Region                                                                    Western Africa

Currency                                                                 CFA Franc (XOF)

Surface area (square kilometres)                                56 785

Population in 2010 (estimated, 000)                           6 028

Population density in 2010 (per m2)                           106,2

Capital city and population in 2011 (000)                    Lomé (1 524)

United Nations membership date                               20 September 1960.

Energy profile

Togo’s main energy production source is biomass. The country’s energy sector relies heavily on imported fuel, oil and electricity, due to an increasing gap between demand and supply, a lack of reliability of the grid and poor performance of equipment and appliances used by consumers.

Due to frequent shortcomings of the country’s domestic power grid, Ghana often supplies a large proportion of Togo’s electricity needs by linking the countries’ grids. The peak load is currently at 100MW, while the base-load is between 50 and 60MW.

Political and social issues have increasingly limited the national energy producer’s ability to mobilise the necessary financing to meet the growing electricity demand.

Togo’s energy consumption characteristics:

• Products are imported from various countries.

• The majority of the total consumption occurs in and around Togo’s capital city, Lomé.

• The household sector accounts for 54% of Togo’s total electricity consumption.

• The transport sector holds the next largest share, with 18,9%.


Electricity market

In Togo, electricity is supplied by the Togolese Electricity Company (CEET) and the Benin Electricity Community (CEB). In addition to these two producers, industrial and independent companies produce their own supplies, using generators.  

Energy framework

According to the Togo Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper – Interim (PRSP-I), the Togolese government has pursued several objectives in the energy sector, even though it has no renewable energy plan yet. These objectives include the implementation of policies for the promotion of renewables, the increase of electricity supply for rural areas and the implementation of regulatory institutions under the PRSP-I. A number of priorities were also formulated, including institutional reform of the energy sector and a rapid development of production capacity to alleviate energy shortages, the creation of a framework for the development and financing of rural electrification and expansion of the previously-implemented Rural Electrification Master Plan, and the implementation of legislative and regulatory frameworks for the substitution of traditional energy use with renewable energy use. Currently an ongoing study into the electric power sub-sector in the country is being performed by the SOFRECO-IIC group.

A brighter shade of grey

The International Finance Corporation (IFC) is currently collaborating with non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to improve the condition of power generation capacities, as well as to implement new generation solutions. In addition, private firms from Europe have expressed interest in promoting the production of ethanol as a fuel source in the country, and feasibility studies are being conducted.

The implementation of a rural electrification master plan was initiated. In the framework of the Priorities Actions Interim Programme (PAIP) and the PRSP-I, several priorities were formulated.   Recent developments could endanger the future financial viability of Togo’s energy sector, in particular the national distribution utility’s commitment to a take-or-pay contract for 100MW of power with an Independent Power Producer (IPP), which started operation in 2010. The agreement with US-based ContourGlobal and Finland-based Wärtsilä is set to produce an estimated 780GWh/year for the country, but concerns have been raised over the high costs of the project.

An endless cycle

The electricity sector experienced a significant increase in production in 2009 compared with previous years. To reduce the need for government subsidies, CEET negotiates export contracts to ensure that there is sufficient demand for its output. However, new investments are needed in terms of expanding the current distribution network and improving its quality. Conflicts in responsibility among the ministries responsible for energy policy formulation in Togo have hindered optimal progress in energy co-ordination and harnessing. Clear delineation of responsibilities in managing and developing energy resources would lead to more efficient and effective energy utilisation.

Commercial energy use                                                                           337,91

Electric power consumption (kWh)                                                           521 000 000 kWh

Electric power transmission and distribution losses (% of output)                33,97%

Electric power transmission and distribution losses (million kWh)                 89 000 000-million kWh

Fossil fuel production                                                                              98,7%

Hydropower production                                                                           1,3%

Nuclear production                                                                                  0%

Imports (net % of energy use)                                                                 28,94%

Traditional fuel consumption                                                                    71,9%



Although no dedicated regulatory framework exists for sustainable energy in the country, energy legislation is restricted to two laws governing the pricing and distribution of hydrocarbons in general, and petroleum products in particular (laws 1999-003 and 2002-029 respectively), and the law 2000-012 governing the electricity sector.

The Regulation Authority of the Electricity Sector regulates the CEB and deals with the importing and exporting of electrical energy for Togo. The law liberalised the production of electrical energy in Togo.

The Authority is a private organisation in terms of authority and funding, but production and supply of electrical energy must be exploited within the framework of a public service mission. Therefore production is subjected to the requirements of public service, and must be agreed by the state and those who are in charge in the private and public sectors.

Even though attempts are being made to attract investors and establish concrete energy development plans, a major obstacle within Togo’s renewable energy market development is the lack of policies. Furthermore, there is a significant lack of regulatory instruments for private investments in the sector and international investment is not likely, given the country’s unstable economic situation.

Full thanks and acknowledgement are given to and for the information given to write this article.


GIL Africa 2017