Morella, Elvira

Global Energy and Extractives Practice
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Last updated January 31, 2023
Elvira Morella is a Senior Energy Specialist in the Global Energy and Extractives Practice at the World Bank Group where she leads energy sector investment operations and major analytical work in the Sub-Saharan Region. Her focus includes energy markets and institutions; power sector reforms; regional integration and power trade. She has also served as Infrastructure Economist in operations and analytical assignments in the water and urban sectors in several regions, including, in addition to Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East and North Africa and East Asia.  Prior to joining the World Bank Group, she worked as Technical Expert in the Development Cooperation Department of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, advising on major environmental and cultural heritage preservation assistance programs in Egypt and Syria. Elvira holds a Bachelor's degree in Economics from Bocconi University and a Master in Public Administration from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

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Now showing 1 - 5 of 5
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    Independent Power Projects in Sub-Saharan Africa: Lessons from Five Key Countries
    (Washington, DC: World Bank, 2016-04-08) Eberhard, Anton ; Gratwick, Katharine ; Morella, Elvira ; Antmann, Pedro
    Inadequate electricity services pose a major impediment to reducing extreme poverty and boosting shared prosperity in Sub-Saharan Africa. Simply put, Africa does not have enough power. Despite the abundant low-carbon and low-cost energy resources available to Sub-Saharan Africa, the region’s entire installed electricity capacity, at a little over 80 GW, is equivalent to that of the Republic of Korea. Looking ahead, Sub-Saharan Africa will need to ramp-up its power generation capacity substantially. The investment needed to meet this goal largely exceeds African countries’ already stretched public finances. Increasing private investment is critical to help expand and improve electricity supply. Historically, most private sector finance has been channeled through privately financed independent power projects (IPP), supported by nonrecourse or limited recourse loans, with long-term power purchase agreements with the state utility or another off-taker. Between 1990 and 2014, IPPs have spread across Sub-Saharan Africa and are now present in 17 countries. Currently, there are 125 IPPs, with an overall installed capacity of 10.7 GW and investments of $24.6 billion. However, private investment could be much greater and less concentrated. South Africa alone accounts for 67 IPPs, 4.3 GW of capacity and $14.4 billion of investments; the remaining projects are concentrated in a handful of countries. The objective of this study is to evaluate the experience of IPPs and identify lessons that can help African countries attract more and better private investment. At the core of this analysis is a reflection on whether IPPs have in fact benefited Sub-Saharan Africa, and how they might be improved. The analysis is based primarily on in depth case studies, carried out in five countries, including Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania and Uganda, which not only have the most numerous but also among the most extensive experience with IPPs.
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    Ethiopia's Infrastructure: A Continental Perspective
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2010-03) Foster, Vivien ; Morella, Elvira
    Infrastructure contributed 0.6 percentage points to Ethiopia's annual per capita gross domestic product (GDP) growth over the last decade. Raising the country's infrastructure endowment level to that of the region's middle-income countries could lift annual growth by an additional 3 percentage points. This will represent a significant boost over the growth performance of the mid-2000s, which averaged around 5 percent. The Africa Infrastructure Country Diagnostic (AICD) has collected and analyzed extensive infrastructure data for more than 40 Sub-Saharan countries, including Ethiopia. The results are presented in reports on various infrastructure sectors Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), irrigation, power, transport, water and sanitation and policy areas, including investment needs, fiscal costs, and sector performance. This country report presents the key AICD findings for Ethiopia. This will allow its infrastructure situation to be benchmarked against that of other African nations that, like Ethiopia, are low-income countries, with particular emphasis on immediate regional neighbors in East Africa. Several methodological issues should be borne in mind. First, the cross country nature of the data collection creates an inevitable time lag. The period covered by the AICD runs from 2001 to 2006. Most technical data are presented for 2006 (or the most recent year available), while financial data typically are averaged over the available period to smooth out the effect of short term fluctuations. Second, cross country comparisons require standardization of the indicators and the analysis to ensure consistency. Therefore, some of the indicators may be slightly different from those that are routinely reported and discussed at the country level. During the 2000s, Ethiopia's annual economic growth has averaged 4.8 percent, compared with only 0.5 percent in the previous decade. Notwithstanding this improvement, current annual growth levels still fall short of the sustained 7 percent needed to meet the Millennium Development Goals. Improved structural and stabilization policies generated an estimated 4.2 percent of Ethiopia's improved per capita growth performance during the 2000s, and improvements in the country's infrastructure platform over that period contributed up to 0.6 percentage points to growth. This was due almost entirely to the introduction of mobile telephony in Ethiopia. Simulations suggest that if Ethiopia's infrastructure platform could be improved to the level of the African leader, Mauritius, annual per capita growth rates could increase by 3.8 percent. This potential impact would come equally from improvements to transport, power, and ICT infrastructure.
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    Africa's Water and Sanitation Infrastructure : Access, Affordability, and Alternatives
    (World Bank, 2011-03-09) Banerjee, Sudeshna Ghosh ; Morella, Elvira ; Foster, Vivien ; Briceño-Garmendia, Cecilia
    The Africa Infrastructure Country Diagnostic (AICD) has produced continent-wide analysis of many aspects of Africa's infrastructure challenge. The main findings were synthesized in a flagship report titled Africa's Infrastructure: a time for transformation, published in November 2009. Meant for policy makers, that report necessarily focused on the high-level conclusions. It attracted widespread media coverage feeding directly into discussions at the 2009 African Union Commission Heads of State Summit on Infrastructure. Although the flagship report served a valuable role in highlighting the main findings of the project, it could not do full justice to the richness of the data collected and technical analysis undertaken. There was clearly a need to make this more detailed material available to a wider audience of infrastructure practitioners. Hence the idea of producing four technical monographs, such as this one, to provide detailed results on each of the major infrastructure sectors, information and communication technologies (ICT), power, transport, and water, as companions to the flagship report. These technical volumes are intended as reference books on each of the infrastructure sectors. They cover all aspects of the AICD project relevant to each sector, including sector performance, gaps in financing and efficiency, and estimates of the need for additional spending on investment, operations, and maintenance. Each volume also comes with a detailed data appendix, providing easy access to all the relevant infrastructure indicators at the country level, which is a resource in and of itself.
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    Africa - Ebbing Water, Surging Deficits : Urban Water Supply in Sub-Saharan Africa
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2008-06) Banerjee, Sudeshna ; Skilling, Heather ; Foster, Vivien ; Briceno-Garmendia, Cecilia ; Morella, Elvira ; Chfadi, Tarik
    With only 56 percent of the population enjoying access to safe water, Sub-Saharan Africa lags behind other regions in terms of access to improved water sources. Based on present trends, it appears that the region is unlikely to meet the target of 75 percent access to improved water by 2015, as specified in the Millennium Development Goals (MDG). The welfare implications of safe water cannot be overstated. The estimated health and time-saving benefits of meeting the MDG goal are about 11 times as high as the associated costs. Monitoring the progress of infrastructure sectors such as water supply has been a significant by-product of the MDG, and serious attention and funding have been devoted in recent years to developing systems for monitoring and evaluating in developing countries. Piped water reaches more urban Africans than any other form of water supply-but not as large a share as it did in the early 1990s. The most recent available data for 32 countries suggests that some 39 percent of the urban population of Sub-Saharan Africa is connected to a piped network, compared with 50 percent in the early 1990s. Analysis suggests that the majority of those who lack access to utility water live too far away from the distribution network, although some fail to connect even when they live close by. Water-sector institutions follow no consistent pattern in Sub-Saharan Africa. Where service is centralized, a significant minority has chosen to combine power and water services into a single national multi-utility urban water sector reforms were carried out in the 1990s, with the aim of creating commercially oriented utilities and bringing the sector under formal regulation. One goal of the reforms was to attract private participation in the sector.
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    Ethiopia’s Infrastructure : A Continental Perspective
    ( 2011-03-01) Foster, Vivien ; Morella, Elvira
    Infrastructure contributed 0.6 percentage points to Ethiopia's annual per capita GDP growth over the last decade. Raising the country's infrastructure endowment to that of the region's middle-income countries could add an additional 3 percentage points to infrastructure's contribution to growth. Ethiopia's infrastructure successes include developing Ethiopia Airlines, a leading regional carrier; upgrading its network of trunk roads; and rapidly expanding access to water and sanitation.The country's greatest infrastructure challenge lies in the power sector, where a further 8,700 megawatts of generating plant are needed over the next decade, implying a doubling of current capacity. The transport sector faces the challenges of low levels of rural accessibility and inadequate road maintenance. Ethiopia s ICT sector currently suffers from a poor institutional and regulatory framework. Addressing Ethiopia's infrastructure deficit will require a sustained annual expenditure of $5.1 billion over the next decade. The power sector alone requires $3.3 billion annually, with $1 billion needed to facilitate regional power trading. That level of spending represents 40 percent of the country's GDP and a tripling of the $1.3 billion spent annually in the mid-2000s. As of 2006, there was an annual funding gap of $3.5 billion. Improving road maintenance, removing inefficiencies in power (notably underpricing), and privatizing ICT services could shrink the gap. But Ethiopia needs a significant increase in its already proportionally high infrastructure funding and careful handling of public and private investments if it is to reach its infrastructure targets within a reasonable time.