The International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the government of Niger have announced a project to develop up to 50MW of grid-connected solar power. The power generated will be equivalent to roughly 20% of the country’s installed capacity.
In partnership with the World Bank Group’s Scaling Solar, the project will help power thousands of homes, schools, businesses and hospitals in Niger, where most lack access to electricity. The project will also support the government’s efforts to generate 30% of its power through sustainable sources by 2035.
Under the agreement, IFC, together with its sister organisations, the World Bank and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA), will work with the government of Niger through the Ministry of Petroleum, Energy and Renewable Energy and the country’s electricity utility, Société Nigérienne d’Électricité (NIGELEC), to attract private sector partners to develop, tender and finance utility-scale solar power, quickly and affordably.
Mahamane Sani Mahamadou, Minister of Petroleum, Energy and Renewable Energy: “Niger aims to increase its installed power capacity to support its economic growth and improve access to electricity for its population. To achieve this goal, the use of solar energy will be critical.”
Sérgio Pimenta, IFC’s vice president for the Middle East and Africa: “Increasing access to clean energy is a priority for IFC in Africa because it improves quality of life and supports economic activity, poverty reduction and job creation. The Scaling Solar programme will make it faster, cheaper and more transparent for Niger to procure utility-scale, private solar power with reputable independent power producers.”
The Scaling Solar initiative helps governments procure and develop privately funded, grid-connected utility-scale solar projects to produce electricity at competitive tariffs. Senegal and Zambia have successfully commissioned plants under the Scaling Solar programme. Other countries in the pipeline are Afghanistan, Côte d’Ivoire, Madagascar, Togo and Uzbekistan.
About Scaling Solar
Scaling Solar is a World Bank Group programme that makes it easier for governments to procure and develop large solar projects with private financing. It includes a package of expert advice, fully templated documents, pre-approved financing, insurance products and guarantees. Scaling Solar is developed in partnership with the Government of Denmark, the Government of Korea, the Government of the Netherlands, the Government of the United Kingdom, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID)’s Power Africa and the Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG).