French power group Engie has started up its first minigrid installation in Zambia, while also announcing plans to expand Fenix, its PV home system unit for the African market. It did not disclose the specifications or size of the minigrid system.
Crossboundary Energy Access – which claims to be the continent’s first mini-grid financing facility – wants to unlock $11 billion in private capital to bring energy to 100 million people in sub-Saharan Africa. Raising capital has been a struggle despite mini-grids being lauded as a solid solution for electrification.
The African Development Bank is currently seeking consultants to arrange debt financing for five 20 MW projects it aims to develop under Zambia’s Renewable Energy Financing Framework.
The Ngonye project proposed by Italian energy giant Enel Group and Zambia’s Industrial Development Corporation, will be financially underpinned by senior loans of up to $10 million from the International Finance Corporation, up to $12 million from IFC-Canada Climate Change Program and up to $11.75 million from the European Investment Bank.
The Green Climate Fund (GCF) has approved over US$50 million in funding for the development of up to 100 MW of renewable energy projects, primarily solar, in Zambia.
Through a partnership between German investment bank, KfW and the Zambian Ministry of energy, the GET FiT scheme has entered its first round, with a tender of up to 100 MW.
The PV plant will be the nation’s largest once complete, and will be implemented under the International Finance Corporation’s Scaling Solar program.
German PV developer BayWa r.e. has completed an 86 kW PV + storage project, which will power irrigation equipment for farmers in Zambia. The project marks Baywa r.e.’s first entrance on to the African continent, where the company says it has significant plans for expansion.
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