The electricity grid in Madagascar is poorly developed. Only larger cities have electricity connections. The major suppliers are JIRAMA, HydElec, HFF (Henri Fraise fils & Cie) and QMM (Rio Tinto QMM), the latter two being only available in Antananarivo and Tolagnaro (Fort Daupin). There are also smaller suppliers that operate small waterworks or individual solar panels, for example. JIRAMA is the most used electricity supplier and is organised purely by the state, the abbreviation stands for “Jiro sy rano Malagasy”, in English “Madagascan Water and Energy”.
Power outages in Madagascar’s normal grid are still the order of the day and can last several hours. In some places, electricity is generally switched off at night and street lighting is generally not available. Most of the smaller villages – and there are many of them – are not yet connected to the electricity grid. In 2015, only a good 15% of the population had access to electricity. A flashlight is therefore always a good companion in Madagascar.
Hotels and lodges usually have electricity, in more remote areas or on islands some hotels use their own generators. As these are very loud and consume a lot of petrol, they are only switched on at certain times or on request.
The electricity grid in Madagascar is 220 V, just like in Europe. The sockets are similar to those in France (see photos), but have two pins (ground wires) at the top and bottom. They can be used with Euro plugs without problems (type C), Schuko plugs (type E and F) cannot be used in all sockets. Basically, you should be careful when using the sockets, as they are often not well fixed and the power cables are sometimes adventurously installed.