THE Rural Electrification Authority (REA) Zambia and the Africa Minigrid Developers Association (AMDA) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aimed at promoting mini-grids and decentralized utilities for rural electrification in Zambia.
The MoU establishes a framework governing how REA and AMDA will cooperate to support private sector mini-grid financing, policy, and deployment across the country.
It will also establish the manner in which the parties will collaborate effectively championing electricity uptake in rural communities.
REA Chief Executive Officer Engineer Clement Silavwe is confident that the collaboration will increase the Authority’s footprint in renewable energy space, specifically off grid.
“REA is creating synergies with organisations such as AMDA that are working towards ending energy poverty. This collaboration will provide a platform in which both institutions will share knowledge and leverage on each other’s expertise to enhance service delivery in renewable energy, and increase access to electricity for rural communities,” said Engineer Silavwe.
And AMDA Chief Executive Officer Jessica Stephens said that the MoU would help mitigate the impact of COVID-19 in achieving universal electrification.
“AMDA is committed to working with REA and other governments across the continent to support universal electrification and the elimination of energy poverty. This MOU is the first step in what we hope will be a fruitful relationship, working together to address the challenges of rural electrification through the growth of the mini-grid market.
“We look forward to supporting a future that ensures all Zambians have access to clean, reliable access to energy,” said Jessica Stephens, AMDA’s Chief Executive Officer.
The signing of the MOU signifies the importance of both the Public and Private Sectors’ concerted efforts aimed at increasing access to electricity services in rural areas in Zambia, with an immediate focus on improving regulations for the mini-grid sector, the inclusion of the private sector in the national planning and economic recovery from the pandemic of COVID-19.
The MoU will further support the Government of Zambia in achieving Sustainable Development Goal number 7 (SDG7) focusing on universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all by 2030 in order to ensure universal electrification for all Zambians.