The Norwegian government has decided to offer a guarantee of NOK 300 million (30 million) per year to renewable energy suppliers to guarantee their investments in low-income countries. Many of these countries are in Africa, south of the Sahara.
Good news for renewable energy suppliers based in Norway. Dag-Inge Ulstein, Norway’s Minister for International Development, promised that they would now have a guarantee of NOK 300 million (€30 million) per year for their investments in low-income countries.
The United Nations (UN) estimates that currently 680 million people in the world do not have access to electricity. More than half of them are in Africa, south of the Sahara. Renewable energy suppliers may hold the key to reversing the situation.
“Investing in developing countries involves risks that hinder the growth of the investments needed to achieve full access to modern energy, including the fight against climate change. Guarantee schemes can cover part of the potential losses, which reduces the level of risk. For many years, Norwegian technology companies have been calling for better guarantee systems so that investments in renewable energy can gain momentum,” says Dag-Inge Ulstein.
Off-grid companies based in Norway will be able to benefit from the Norwegian Government’s guarantee. The off-grid solutions they provide are easy to install and less expensive. Solar off-grid systems are essential for people living in rural areas, which have the lowest rate of access to electricity.
Solar off grid is also essential for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) whose efforts are being undermined by power cuts. However, in several African countries south of the Sahara, they accompany economic growth.
The Norwegian government also sees this initiative as part of the fight against climate change, and more specifically the limitation of CO2 emissions. Currently, Norwegian companies are very involved in the energy transition and the provision of access to electricity in Africa. This is the case of Scatec Solar, which operates as an independent power producer (IPP). It is developing many projects in Africa, and has recently commissioned a 40 MWp solar photovoltaic power plant in Mocuba, a town in the province of Zambézia, in eastern Mozambique.