Electrification: RISE Indicators for Energy Access

Data analysis

Which countries have an enabling environment for investment in energy access?

RISE Indicators for Energy Access

Quick Facts

Of the high-impact countries, only five provide widespread policy support for energy access. These include Bangladesh, India, Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda.
70 percent of Africa’s least electrified nations—with access rates below 20 percent—have barely begun to establish an enabling environment for access.
Electrification plans that help define boundaries between utility and decentralized solutions are generally lacking. 45 percent of high-impact countries do not have electrification plans yet.
In the Asia Pacific region, the policy framework for access to electricity is more favorable and this is reflected in access rates of 90.3 percent in 2014 compared to 37 percent in Sub- Saharan Africa. Countries in the Asia Pacific region score an average of 90 percent on the RISE policy environment indicating that most elements of a strong policy framework are in place, in contrast to 35 percent in Sub-Saharan Africa.


  • Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy (RISE) offers policy makers and investors detailed country-level insights on the policy and regulatory environment for sustainable energy across 111 countries globally.
  • The top RISE scorers in energy access generally do well across all three possible energy supply solutions— grids, mini- grids and stand-alone systems— suggesting they are being pursued not as substitutes but as complements as part of comprehensive national energy access strategies.
  • High scorers for RISE on access tend to do well across policies for grids, mini-grids, and stand-alone systems suggesting efforts are complementary. Countries like India and Bangladesh are emerging as leaders with an innovative mix of grid and off-grid solutions.
  • Utilities play an important role in improving access but RISE shows that many utilities in the developing world are not creditworthy and struggle to make the investments needed to expand electricity networks to the unserved. Dedicated government budget lines to support electrification are often missing and improvements are needed in utility transparency and monitoring. This includes the collection, reporting to regulators and public availability of key information about utility financial and technical performance that can provide a basis for investors and developers to assess investment opportunities. By monitoring the reliability of electricity services utilities can also ensure the high operating efficiency and financial viability of their core business.
  • The full cost of connecting to the grid, which varies from US$22 in Bangladesh to US$500 in several Sub-Saharan African countries, exceeds US$100 in the vast majority of countries. The biggest driver of connection costs is capital investment for buying materials, including poles, cables, and transformers. Sub-Saharan Africa has the highest fees, in most cases because customers have to pay for electrical equipment (circuit breakers, meters, cables).


NOTES: 1. No data available for Korea, DPR.
2. Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy (RISE) is a suite of indicators that assesses the legal and regulatory environment for investment in sustainable energy. 3. Doing Business is a relative ranking of 190 economies based on the regulatory environment. It does this by sorting the aggregate scores of 11 topics, each consisting of several indicators, giving equal weight to each topic.

SOURCES: Regulatory Indicators for Sustainable Energy (RISE), World Bank Group, 2017.
“Doing Business 2017: Equal Opportunity for All”, shttp://www.doingbusiness.org/rankings, 2017.
Data extracted from http://rise.esmap.org/ on 06/23/2017. World Development Indicators, World Bank Group, 2014.
Data extracted from http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/SP.POP.TOTL?end=2014&name_desc=false&view=chart on 06/20/2017.