Global energy consumption is expected to jump 37 percent during the next
20 years, according to BP’s Energy Outlook 2035. And 96 percent of that growth
will occur outside the 34 mostly affluent countries in the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development. More than half of that growth will be in
India and China alone.
To meet that demand, public and private organizations are backing major
energy infrastructure projects in emerging markets around the globe. (Check
out case studies on pages 36-41.)
But if the need for energy infrastructure projects is clear, so are the challenges. Everything from immature project management practices, security
threats, unreliable vendor networks and local politics can stymie project progress—or even stop it dead in its tracks.
But the biggest challenge facing project leaders is the shortage of experienced
workers and technical skills, says Brian Mushimba, PMP, Kampala, Uganda-based technical director at South African public utility Eskom.
“In the U.S., for every project I worked on I could get the specific skills I
needed on my team,” says Mr. Mushimba, who spent 14 years working at global
engineering organizations in the U.S. before moving to Eskom in 2013. The lack
of relevant skills in the local talent pool makes meeting quality, cost and schedule goals a daily obstacle, he says. “We constantly have to manage that risk.”
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expected to jump
during the next 20
years. More than
half of that growth
will be in India and