May 20, 2024
THE RURAL ELECTRIFICATION AGENCY HOLDS FIRST INVESTOR MATCHMAKING EVENT TO ACCELERATE THE SOLAR POWER NAIJA PROGRAMME
NIGER: Households, businesses grappling with poor power supply --- Investigation
– By Godswill Odiong

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The Rural Electrification Agency (REA) holds a first-of-its-kind investor matchmaking event for the Solar Power Naija Programme to provide the opportunity for potential investors to pitch their financial offerings to developers, clearly stating the selection criteria and key terms. Also, the event provides a networking and matchmaking forum that brings together key investors and high-performing developers (pre-evaluated by the SPN team) in the power sector. The event was organized in collaboration with the Power Africa Nigeria Power Sector Program (PA-NPSP, USAID)

The Solar Power Naija Programme was launched as part of the Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP) to achieve the roll-out of 5 million new solar connections in off-grid communities. This program is expected to generate an additional N7 billion increase in tax revenues per annum and $10 million in annual import substitution. The objectives of the programme are to Expand energy access to 25 million individuals (5 million new connections) through the provision of Solar Home Systems (SHS) or connection to a mini-grid, Increase local content in the off-grid solar value chain and facilitate the growth of the local manufacturing and assembly industry and Incentivize the creation of 250,000 new jobs in the energy sector.

Speaking during the event, the Managing Director/CEO of the Rural Electrification Agency, Engr. Ahmad Salihijo Ahmad encouraged partnerships like these to boost energy access in communities. He stated “As the implementing agency for Nigeria’s off-grid strategy, the REA has been working to support private developers by creating an enabling environment to facilitate investments in various ways, including access to data, policy support, grants, capacity development, stakeholder management, and most importantly financing for Developers”

While giving his remarks, the Acting Deputy Missions Director, USAID Nigeria, Stephan Menard stated   I encourage the private developers to take advantage in accessing financing towards improving the lives of Nigerians by delivering sustainable energy access

The Head, Solar Power Naija Programme, Barbara Izilien stated “We hope with this approach, we will be able to build quick partnerships that would lead to new connections and further count towards our target of electrifying a minimum of 5 million households, serving a minimum of 25 million Nigerians.”

The Solar Power Naija Programme implemented through the Rural Electrification Agency (REA), is actively working on catalysing access to financing for developers in the off-grid sector to achieve the programme targets.

The Rural Electrification Agency (REA) is the Implementing Agency of the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) under the Federal Ministry of Power tasked with the electrification of unserved and underserved communities to catalyze economic growth and improve the quality of life for Nigerians. The Agency was established under part IX, Sections 88- 89 of the Electric Power Sector Reform Act (EPSRA), 2005.

The REA is currently implementing the Rural Electrification Fund (REF), Capital Projects, Nigeria Electrification Project (NEP), Solar Power Naija (SPN), Energizing Education Programme (EEP), Energizing Economies Initiative (EEI), Energizing Agriculture Programme (EAP), Energy for All – Mass Rural Electrification and Research and Innovation Hub. Africa Mini Grids Programme and Derisking Sustainable Off-Grid Lighting Solutions.

The Agency is responsible for creating an enabling environment for private sector-led projects, which includes conducting feasibility assessments, energy audits, enumeration, data analysis, identification of qualified private sector developers, and project stakeholder engagements.

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