Three African renewable energy projects have been awarded funding from Access Power’s Access Co-Development Facility support mechanism, while at the same time French electric utility ENGIE partnered with sub-Saharan African developer eleQtra to develop and construct a wind power project in Ghana.
In the space of only a few days, four separate renewable energy projects were given the means to proceed. Access Power, a developer and owner and operator of power assets in emerging countries, announced the winners of its $7 million Access Co-Development Facility (ACF), a funding and support platform that it developed to provide local project developers in Africa with the technical expertise and funding necessary to bring their projects to fruition. A total of 82 entrants from 23 countries were sorted down to three winners:
- Tanzania: 30MW, Kondoa, Solar PV project
- Rwanda: 9.7MW, Rukarara, Hydro project
- Ghana: 48MW, Winneba, Wind project
The projects, though small in size, are nevertheless big in impact for Africa. Together, they will provide more than 85 megawatts (MW) of electricity, which is enough to power more than 420,000 homes and businesses across the three countries.
“We are very excited to begin working with today’s winners in partnership with EREN and help bring their projects to fruition,” said Reda El Chaar, Executive Chairman of Access Power. “Each of these projects has the power to dramatically improve the lives of the communities around these renewable energy facilities.
“By partnering with us, these local entrepreneurs will gain access to not only our pot of $7 million but also our network of contacts and technical experts, underlining the unique nature of the ACF in creating a clear route to market.”
Each of the projects will now enter into a Joint Development Agreement with Access Power, which will take an equity stake in each project. Each project will therefore have access to the company’s resources, access to its network, and will receive assistance in funding, grid studies, environmental and social impacts, and due diligence fees.
Another project, however, also received a go-ahead, thanks to a partnership between French electric utility ENGIE, which partnered with eleQtra, a developer of power and transportation projects in sub-Saharan Africa. The two signed a Joint Development Agreement to support the development of the 50 MW Ada Wind power project, set to be developed in the Greater Accra Region in Ghana. ENGIE will enter as a 40% partner in the project, which is expected to require financing of around $120 million, and could begin operations as early as the beginning of 2019.
“eleQtra is delighted to have ENGIE joining the development of what we believe will be the first wind energy project in Ghana,” said eleQtra Partner Ebbe Hamilton. “We will now start the next phase of the development in order to bring the project as soon as possible into operation.”
“The Ghanaian Government is looking to strengthen its renewable energy industry and is putting in place a regulatory framework that should encourage the electrification of the country in an affordable and sustainable manner,” added Philippe Miquel, Regional Manager Western & Central Africa for ENGIE. “The Ada Wind Project will be instrumental in the diversification of Ghana’s energy portfolio. Our partnership will bring the technical experience, the local knowledge and the funding required to develop, construct and deliver this competitive 50 MW wind project.”