Mr Ketil Karsen, Head of European Union (EU) Delegation to Nigeria and Economic Community of West Africa States (ECOWAS), on Wednesday, launched a 30 million Euro sustainable energy investment fund for off-grid and captive power projects in Nigeria.
Karsen launched the fund at the 4th Edition of the Nigeria Energy Forum (NEF) in Lagos, tagged: “Upscaling Clean Energy for Sustainable Development”.
According to him, the fund will be granted to Renewable Energy (RE) developers in the country, with a focus on the development of off-grid as well as captive projects.
“Looking at the Nigeria energy sector is absolutely vital. Nigeria has a population growth, a lot of energetic private sector initiative and entrepreneurs in the country.
“For the EU, this is another opportunity for us to show how much support we are giving to this initiative. We have put aside significant funding.
“Today, we are launching a new window through what is called Electrification Financing Initiative, (ElectriFI) with 30 million euros, specifically for Nigeria, coming in addition to the 165 million euros we have already provided over the last years.
“We know this is part of the solution when it comes to development and opportunity in Nigeria.
“Bringing business community and policymakers together, I think is a vital part of the solution here, what works in practice must be part of the solution, and of course.
“Listening to the opportunity of sustainable and renewable energy is just impossible to fill development in the medium to long term with fossil fuel alone.
“We need to find ways that are sustainable and friendly in terms of climate change,” he said.
Also, the Chief Executive Officer, All On, Mr Wiebe Boer, said that there were over 200 million dollars in grant capital coming through the Renewable Energy Electrification Program.
Boer said that there was another 80 million dollars in debt capital coming through the EU/AFD’s SUNREF programme through Access and UBA.
“The EU has just announced another funding window tomorrow through Electrifi.
“There is the AfDB’s Off Grid Energy Fund, DeutscheBank is coming with a debt fund. Sterling Bank is the first Nigerian commercial bank to lend to the space in a serious way.
“Shell has made substantial capital available through our company, All On.
“We are collaborating with the AfDB for an equity fund for Nigeria and have already partnered with BOI on a local currency debt fund.
“Persistent Energy Capital now has an office in Nigeria. Acumen has moved from Accra to Lagos and is actively seeking off-grid energy investment opportunities,” he said.
He said that the government had put right regulations and policy for off-grid development in the country.
Commenting, Dr Daniel Adeuyi, the Chairman of NEF-2019, said that sustainable energy systems could empower livelihoods, enhance economic growth and emancipate communities of local, national and regional levels.
Adeuyi said that lack of access to modern, sustainable and affordable energy services could reverse development and result in increased inefficiencies at all levels.
“It is time for key stakeholders in the energy value chain to act now. Act together and act quickly.
“This is why NEF-2019 focussed on how to mobilise investments for upscaling the development of clean energy solutions in Nigeria and Africa,” he said.