Energy (278)

Govt Threatens To Evict Residents Near Karuma Dam

Uganda’s appetite to generate enough electricity to power the growing economy and a large population commenced the construction of Karuma Hydroelectric Power Station.

To effect this, the government needed land. The 600MW Karuma HPP is located on the Nile River in Kiryandongo district in mid-northern Uganda, 110km downstream of Lake Kyoga, and 270km from Kampala, the capital of Uganda.

To acquire such land, the government must fairly and timely compensate the Project Affected Persons (PAP) so that they can relocate to a new location of their choice. Sometimes the project relocates the PAPs to an agreed area.

More than a decade after the project started, reports of unfilled compensation and illegal evictions are marring the Karuma dam project which is being undertaken by Synohydro, a Chinese company.

On July 6, 2023 the government published a notice in the New Vision newspaper telling the local communities around the Karuma hydro project reservoir to leave their homes within 30 days from the publication date of notice or face eviction.

A report released by Just Finance International (JFI) said the government’s move is an unusual action, negligent in the best case and an outright deceptive because the newspaper in which the notice was published hardly any audience among the project-affected people living around the Karuma reservoir.

“I just heard from outside when people were discussing this issue – but nobody has ever come to my home to explain anything,” a man interviewed by JFI said.

Other respondents told JFI said they received no other notice from any representative of the government or from Sinohydro, the Chinese state-owned contractor for the Karuma project.

Civil society organizations told JFI that publishing such important announcements in a newspaper is a contravention of the official resettlement process.

The CSOs said that the proper procedures require all affected people to be contacted in person and in their local languages before any eviction can take place.

While resettlements caused by the Karuma hydro dam area began in 2014, JFI reports that the construction of the Karuma dam deprived hundreds of people in Uganda’s Nile delta of their land, homes and livelihoods.

Many people have been waiting almost ten years for relocation and fair compensation for their land, JFI said, adding that there is still an ongoing court case contesting what the communities should be compensated.

Some project-affected people say that the compensation they received was insufficient for buying new equivalent land elsewhere. Others say they did not receive the money they were promised.

Many continue to live on smaller parts of their old land, even as they face lost income and other hardships since the land acquisition began.

Without access to their old farming plots, many families have nothing to sell on the market to earn a living. Children have dropped out of school because their parents could no longer afford the school fees.

In the weeks before the eviction notice appeared in the newspaper, some project-affected people reported visitors alleging to represent  “investors” with offers to buy out the land. One community member told JFI that some of these representatives visited his village offering twenty million shillings, a price was much lower than the market price.

When the villagers rejected the offer, the representatives said that their resistance was useless. “The government is coming to evict you because the government is promoting foreign investment,” the villagers were told.

JFI visited the Karuma area at the end of July 2023. There had been no signs of any eviction activity at the time. No evictions had yet taken place as of mid-August, according to JFI sources.

Former Eskom Workers Demand For Salary Upgrade Before Joining UEGCL

The takeover of Nalubaale and Kiira hydroelectric power generation plants by Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited (UEGCL) is not a smooth one.

News coming in from Jinja is that the former employees of Eskom Uganda Limited are making a salary upgrade to be at par with the government (UEGCL) scale.

It is understood that Eskom has been paying low salaries and now the former employees of the exiting South African energy firm have their new salaries to match that of UEDCL.

UEGCL was maintaining the salary something which the former Eskom employees are disputing, demanding equal pay.

Eskom early this week Eskom handed over the two power plants to UEGCL after the expiry of their 20-year concession.

 At the handover ceremony in Jinja, the Chief Executive Officer of UEGCL, Dr Eng. Harrison Mutikanga, said they will officially start managing and running the plants on Saturday, April 1, 2023.

But this handover is being faced with an impasse between UEGCL and the former Eskom employee who have refused to sign their employment contracts until they agree on their remuneration.

Earthfinds understands that over 100 former Eskom employees are yet to sign the employment contracts.

"We have not rejected the jobs but at the same time, we have not accepted. We are all yet to sign. We have the jobs but the salary rate is low," a former employee of Eskom being absorbed by UEGCL told Earthfinds.

Most of the affected people are the site engineers who are responsible for the running of the plants. If they refuse the offer from UEGCL, then the plants’ production will most likely suffer.

“We will be doing the same work to run the plants, why then should our colleagues in UEGCL get a salary doubling ours? We want an improved salary from what Eskom has been giving us,” another former Eskom said.

Uganda as a country largely depends on the electricity generated by Nalubaale and Kiira Hydro Power Plants. Any inconsistencies in electricity generation plunge the country into darkness.


Uganda Takes Over Nalubaale, Kiira HPPs From Eskom

Eskom Uganda Limited has handed over Nalubaale and Kiira Hydro Power Plants (HPPs) back to the government of Uganda through the Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited (UEGCL).

This comes after a 20-year concession between Uganda and the South African energy firm came to an end.

The handover of the power plants to UEGCL and the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development (MEMD) took place in Jinja City on Monday, 27 March 2023.

The Managing Director of Eskom Uganda, Thozama Gangi, said she was handing over a healthy power plant to Uganda.

“I am happy to report that Eskom is handing over a healthy plant to the government of Uganda. The plant’s availability stands at 99%. Nalubaale HPP can run for the next 20 years, and Kiira HPP (50 years),” she said.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of UEGCL, Dr Eng. Harrison Mutikanga, said UEGCL will officially start managing and running the plants on Saturday, April 1, 2023.

He said Nalubaale will be 70 years next year; and thanked Eskom for maintaining and running the power plants in a health manner.

“On behalf of UEGCL, we accept to take back our assets (380MW Nalubaale & Kiira Power Plants),” Dr Eng. Mutikanga said after receiving the plant keys & documents from Peter Lokeris, the Minister of State for Minerals.

“As we take over the management and operation of these power stations, we are committed to ensuring that they continue to provide reliable and affordable electricity to the people of Uganda,” said Dr. Eng Mutikanga

Eng. Ziria Tibalwa Waako, the CEO of Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA), the regulator of the electricity supply industry, was ecstatic that from only 3 power plants, Uganda now has over 50 power generating plants.

"I would like to thank Eskom Uganda for their great contribution and investment in the electricity supply industry,” Eng Waako said.

Eskom Uganda has managed the Nalubaale and Kiira HPP since April 1, 2003.

Here Is Why Museveni is Buoyant About Nuclear Power Project

President Yoweri Museveni has defended the nuclear power generation in Uganda, clarifying that the crisis of 2005 when a severe drought affected the hydro power generation at Owen Falls Dam in Jinja prompted him to direct the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development to diversify the energy mix to ensure energy security for the country.

“In 2005, Uganda experienced drought that affected hydro electricity generation from Owen Falls Dam. As a result we resorted to expensive fossil powered plants to support the economy which prompted me to direct the Ministry of Energy and mineral Development to diversify the energy mix to develop all the available resources including nuclear energy as a means to address the electricity needs of the country,” the President said.

The President made the remarks Wednesday during the opening of the 2nd Africa Nuclear Business Platform Conference and Exhibition 2023 at Speke Resort Munyonyo in Kampala, Uganda. The conference running from 14th - 7th, March has attracted over 300 stakeholders from the domestic and international nuclear community.

Need for transparent partnerships

Museveni further noted that the sustainable development and the utilization of these resources necessitates establishing transparent and well-balanced partnership with key technology providers.

“Therefore, this meeting presents a very good opportunity for exploring areas of strategic collaborations between African countries pursuing nuclear energy development and nuclear energy providers in forging the way forward,” he observed.

While referring to the speech by the representative of the South Korean CEO of the Korean Hydro and Nuclear Company (KHNP), Cha Seop Kim who said Korea has made great strides in the nuclear development, Museveni pointed out that the people of Africa and Uganda in particular lack the mentality to initiate development programs citing Korea that was in the 1960’s poorer than some of the African countries, today has 25 nuclear power plants.

He said in 1986 Uganda was generating only 60 MW of electricity and the country will soon generate 2,100 MW of electricity observing that it will not be enough for the country's needs. He added that Uganda needs about 100,000MW of electricity.

Museveni also noted that the population destroys about 40 billion cubic meters of trees annually for heating and cooking. He said while trees grow easily it is not however the correct way to go.

Tactical ban on uranium

On uranium, the President reiterated his firm stand that the natural mineral will never be exported as it is needed for the generation of nuclear power.

“I halted the exportation of uranium because we need electricity for socio-economic development. The issue of Nuclear Power in Africa is a must, it is reliable. The option of nuclear power is a very wise one; we should not waste time on that,” he stressed.

Museveni further told delegates that the potential of rivers in Africa that include the Nile, Congo, Niger and Zambezi is about 300 MW and they are not reliable.

Centers at Soroti University

Museveni also witnessed the signing of the three (3) Memoranda of Understanding between the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development officials and partners in the nuclear energy sector.

The first MOU was that of the establishment of a center of excellence at Soroti University and was signed by the Minister of State for Energy Okasai Opolot while the Vice Chancellor Professor Ikojja signed on behalf of the University.

The Second MOU was for the establishment of the center for Nuclear Science and Technology at Soroti University and was signed by the Vice President of IVAP SE Pablo Abbate on behalf of IVAP SE Group of Argentina and Okasai signed on behalf of the government of Uganda.

The 3rd MOU was for the development of a nuclear power plant in Uganda and was signed by Cha-seop Kim who was representing the CEO of South Korea's Hydro and Nuclear Power Company Dr. Joo-ho-Whanga.

Nuclear good option for accessing electricity  

Earlier, the Prime Minister the Robinah Nabbanja said nuclear power is one of the options that will enable Uganda to achieve global goals of accessing electricity for all.

She added that potential sites for the construction of the plants have been identified one of them being in Buyende district. She thanked IAEA for the technical support in the feasibility studies.

The Minister of Energy and Mineral Development, Ruth Nankabirwa, who was represented by the Minister of State for Energy Okaasai Sidronius Opolot, told the audience that nuclear power offers many advantages such as a reliable and stable energy supply to enable industrialisation and thus energy security.

Nuclear energy is clean energy

She added that the conference comes at the right time when the Government of Uganda has made the plans to incorporate nuclear power in the country’s energy mix, with an installation, currently standing at 1346MW mainly from Hydro.

The Deputy Director of IAEA Mikhail Chudakov pointed out that the clear alternative for clean energy is nuclear power that can lift many people in Africa from poverty.

Her said nuclear power can also mitigate the issue of climate change.

Uganda Ponders Nuclear Energy Collaboration With Algeria

President Yoweri Museveni is optimistic that Uganda will collaborate with Algeria in the area of nuclear energy

The Ugandan leader was left in awe after visiting the Nuclear Research Center of Algiers on Monday during his 3-day visit to Algeria.

“I congratulate our Algerian brothers & sisters on taking the right steps in the area of Nuclear physics & energy,” Museveni said admiringly.

He explained that nuclear energy helps in the areas of medicine, agriculture, energy & propulsion among other benefits. 

“Uganda already has a nuclear energy unit and we shall collaborate with the Nuclear Research Centre here to agree on specific areas of cooperation,” he said on Monday.

The nuclear energy optimism comes at a time when Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC) has signed an MoU with Sonatrach, the State Oil Company of Algeria.

The UNOC-Sonatrach deal will see Uganda work with Algeria on different oil and gas projects including the upcoming oil refinery set for construction in western Uganda.

At a press conference last week, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development announced it will begin construction of the country’s first nuclear facility in Buyende district, eastern Uganda.

For the Buyende Nuclear Power Plant, Uganda, according to reports, will partners with China National Nuclear Corporation which would assist in developing capabilities for the peaceful use of atomic energy.

"Preparation to evaluate the Buyende Nuclear Power Plant site is ongoing to pave the way for the first nuclear power project expected to generate 2,000 MW, with the first 1,000 MW to be connected to the national grid by 2031," Dr Ruth Nankabirwa Ssentamu, the energy minister, said in a statement.

Nankabirwa warned residents of Buyende District against selling their land to speculators who are targeting the 2031 nuclear energy power plant project worth Shs34 trillion.

"I want to call upon our people of Buyende not to rush to sell their land to speculators who would lure you with huge sums of money expecting to get a lot more as compensation from the government,” she said.

Adding: “Remain with your land and government valuers will be used as usual and the rightful owners shall be compensated,"

In December 2021, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) endorsed Uganda’s nuclear energy power plant development following a successful review of the country’s nuclear infrastructure.


Uganda Makes Increases In Solar Power Energy Generation

The use of solar as an alternative source of energy has in the recent times gained global acclaim and developing countries like Uganda are adjusting and making reforms in their regulatory frameworks to allow and facilitate critical investment. Richer countries like France have pledged to fund efforts such as the International Solar Alliance (ISA), one of the practical off-shoots of COP21, the Global Climate Summit that was held in Paris, France in November, 2016.

And indeed, during the launch of the ISA, in New Delhi, India, in 2017, France president Mr. Emmanuel Macron pledged €700 million euros (about $862m at the time) by 2022 to help developing countries with their solar energy projects. The ISA garners for increased deployment of solar energy technologies as a means for bringing energy access, ensuring energy security, and driving energy transition in its member countries.

To become a beneficiary, Uganda ratified the ISA Treaty making her a member. According to sources, Uganda is a participant in two of the ISA’s critical programmes: the program for ‘scaling solar applications for agricultural use’ and Affordable finance at scale. Uganda has submitted its priority to use solar energy and through synergies with India, the host nation of ISA, the country has been receiving demonstration solar water pumping systems for irrigation.

The three top priorities of ISA are; identification of solar projects; mobilization of public and private finance at scale with a focus on guarantee instruments; and transfer of innovative technology solutions and capacity-building.

So far 32 of the 60 member countries who have joined the Alliance are from Africa. The Alliance will provide a platform to collaborate in addressing identified gaps through a common, agreed approach. Uganda hopes to use solar water pumping systems for irrigation.

Busia Solar Power Plant

The agreement for establishing the $6mn 4MW solar power plant was signed in Egypt in May 2018, between the Egyptian Ministry of Electricity and Renewable Energy and the Ugandan Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development (MEMD), on the sidelines of President Museveni’s visit to Egypt.

The project is fully funded by the Egyptian Agency for Partnership for Development of the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and implemented by the Arab Organization for Industrialization, in collaboration with Giza Systems.

The plant has been completed and handed over to the government of Uganda on Tuesday 25 January 2022, during a ceremony organized by MEMD. It is the latest of major Egyptian developmental projects in Uganda, including the Egyptian Medical Center in Jinja and the launch of new phase of the Egyptian-Ugandan Model Joint Farm.

Meeting Uganda’s rising energy demand

The plant will support the Ugandan energy sector to meet the rising energy demand in a climate–friendly manner. The 4MW production of solar power offsets 126.000 tons of harmful CO2 emissions, which is the equivalent of planting over 2,964,400 trees or removing 22.324 cars from the road for a year. It will also generate 36 million dollars in saving over the lifetime of the plant’s systems. When connected to the national grid, it will meet the needs of the Eastern Uganda region.

The plant is also the first to be operated by an educational institution in Uganda – Busitema University – and will support transfer of technology, technical cooperation and capacity building. It will also increase the feasibility of the development of on grid solar photovoltaic for electricity generation in Uganda.

The existing solar data clearly show that the solar energy resource in Uganda is high throughout the year. The mean solar radiation is 5.1 kWh/m 2 per day, on a horizontal surface. This level of insolation is quite favorable, for the application n of a number of solar technologies.  

Great potential for poverty eradication

The total new installed photovoltaic capacity annually is estimated at 200 kWp for households, institutions and commercial use. Solar thermal has a great potential in the form of solar water heaters in electrified areas.

Today electricity is most often used for water heating, in spite of the fact that it will in many cases be cheaper for the consumer to use solar energy. Furthermore, small solar water heaters are relevant for remote areas, where hot water is needed like in rural clinics and tourism areas, to provide a cheap, reliable and environmentally friendly, source of energy.

The Solar PV Plants in Uganda include Tororo Solar PV (10 MW) in Tororo district, Access Solar PV (10 MW) in Soroti district, Xsabo Solar (20 MW) in Kabulasoke and Emerging Power U Ltd (10MW) in Mayuge district, as well as Tororo PV Power Project (Tororo PV Power Co. Ltd) and Engie Equatorial and Power Distribution at Lolwe Island (600KW).

Energy services such as lighting, heating, cooking, motive power, mechanical transport and telecommunication are essential for socioeconomic development, since they yield social benefits, create employment and generate income. These issues are at the core of poverty eradication and national development.

ERA, UETCL Boards Meet To Bond, Strategize For Better Electricity Sector

Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) on Tuesday, July 5, 2022, hosted the newly inaugurated board of the Uganda Electricity Transmission Company Limited (UETCL) on a courtesy visit at ERA House, Plot 5C-1 Third Street Lugogo, Kampala. 

The Minister of Energy and Mineral Development, Hon. Dr. Ruth Nankabirwa on June 8, 2022, swore in the new UETCL board of directors with Mr. Kwame Ejalu Ejuku as the new Board Chairman.

Other members of the new board are Ms. Achiro Sharon Loka (an independent director), Eng. Innocent Oboko Yotkum (Independent Director), Ms. Sylvia Muwebwa Nabatanzi (independent director); Mr. Julius Mukholi Wamukota (non-independent director and also the representative of the Ministry of Finance), and Eng. Cecilia Nakiranda Menya, a non-independent director and also the representative of the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development. 

Dr. Sarah Wasagali Kanaabi, the Chairperson of the Authority, congratulated the UETCL Board upon their appointment and thanked the Board for accepting to serve the Electricity Supply Industry as the stewards of the UETCL. "Your appointment is a demonstration of trust and confidence in your abilities that equally comes with great expectations," said Dr. Wasagali. 

Dr. Wasagali emphasized that UETCL's sustainability, sound governance, and Going Concern status were of great interest and concern to the Authority and stakeholders in the entire Electricity Supply Industry value chain.

She pledged ERA's unreserved commitment to support the UETCL Board to effectively execute its mandate so that it can contribute to the achievement of the Government of Uganda's aspirations for the improved social welfare of society for the socio-economic transformation of our country Uganda.

Mr. Kwame Ejalu Ejuku, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of UETCL, thanked the Authority for the warm reception and congratulatory messages.

"We were honored by our appointment to this crucial sector in the development of our country, and we take it seriously. As we took our roles, we were aware of the negative stories circulating in the media. We are committed to creating a well-governed and vibrant institution," said Mr. Ejalu.


"We pledge to cooperate and thank the Authority for the support already rendered. We value ERA as our priority stakeholder.”


Present at the reception of the UETCL board were the Board and the Chief Executive Officer of Electricity Regulatory Authority Eng. Ziria Tibalwa Waako, and George Rabajungu, the Chief Executive Officer of Uganda Electricity Transmission Company Limited.

Stanbic Bank Retains 22% Bancassurance Market Lead

Bancassurance contributed UGX103.5billion to the UGX1.1trillion Gross Written Premium (GWP) recorded by Uganda’s insurance sector in 2021 with Stanbic Bank accounting for 22 percent to consolidate its position as market leader.

Bancassurance is the sale of life assurance and other general insurance products through commercial banking institutions; in 2020, bancassurance sales contributed only UGX32bn to the UGX1.06trillion GWP recorded by the country’s insurance sector.

Stanbic Bank Uganda’s Bancassurance agency dominated other commercial bank players in a small but steadily growing business unit, with the lender aggregating UGX22.5billion in GWP, equivalent to 22 percent of the total market share.

The bank generated UGX8.1billion in short-term general insurance premiums and UGX14.5billion in life insurance premiums to cap a year of growth amidst stiff competition.

Stanbic Bank also paid out the most claims in 2021 with life insurance claims paid on behalf of various insurance companies amounting to UGX5.6bn and UGX1.5Bn in general insurance claims.

According to the Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA) the insurance industry enjoyed a generally good year with GWP for both life and non-life cover growing by 11% mostly boosted by a 22% increase in Life Gross Written Premiums.

Makonese Tichaona, Stanbic Bank’s Head of Wealth and Insurance for the East African region has welcomed the performance noting that in a  competitive market where  the various bancassurance agencies continue striving to improve  their solutions, Stanbic’s Bancassurance business  managed to be consistent in its delivery by focusing on client-centred solutions.

Makonese added that through leveraging data science SBIA has been able to craft   tailor made solutions to address client needs. The affordable five-in-one Business Comprehensive cover that addresses the needs of the SMME  to the business community  is a case in point.

Dogo Singh Sherman, Stanbic Bank Uganda’s Manager for Bancassurance said: “We are pleased to retain our market share in a small but growing bancassurance business and 2022 offers us another challenging opportunity to consolidate our position---we’ll continue to innovate through unique partnerships with the customer at the centre of everything we do.”

African Development Fund Extends $27m Grant To Support Development Of Mini Grid And Solar PV Net Metering In Ghana

The Board of Directors of the African Development Fund has approved a $27.39 million grant to Ghana for the development of renewable energy investments in the mini grid and net metering space. 

The project involves the development of 35 mini grids, standalone solar photovoltaic systems in 400 schools, 200 units in healthcare centers and 100 units for community energy services centers in the Volta Lake region. It will also deploy up to 12,000 units of roof-mounted net-metered solar photovoltaic systems for public institutions, small and medium-sized enterprises and selected households.

The project has leveraged co-financing from the Scaling Up Renewable Energy Program, a funding window of the Climate Investment Funds, and the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs, amounting to $28.49 million and $13.30 million, respectively.

The Ghana Mini Grid and Solar Photovoltaic Net Metering is expected to have an annual electricity output of renewable energy estimated at 111,361MWh, corresponding to an installed capacity of 67.5MW. The project will mitigate greenhouse emissions of 0.7795 million tons of CO2 equivalent per year and create up to 2,865 jobs during construction, of which 30% will target women and youth.

Marie-Laure Akin-Olugbade, the African Development Bank Group's Director General for West Africa, said: "The Bank Group's support is aligned to Ghana's development priorities that aim to promote and develop the country's rich renewable energy resources for sustainable economic growth, improved social life and reduced adverse climate change effects. In addition, the post Covid-19 era has highlighted the importance of reliable energy services."

Eyerusalem Fasika, the African Development Bank's Country Manager for Ghana, said: "The project will support Ghana's Covid-19 Alleviation and Revitalization of Enterprises Support (Ghana CARES) program, which identifies the energy sector as an enabler of economic transformation. It has the potential to create jobs, fundamentally expand access to businesses and bring prosperity to Ghanaians."

Daniel Schroth, Acting Director of the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Department, noted that the West African nation of Ghana has one of the highest electrification rates in Africa.

"The approval of the grant facility reflects a strong commitment of the African Development Bank to support Ghana's objective to achieve universal access to electricity and its 10% renewable energy target by 2030," he said. "This project is a good example of the Bank Group's ability to leverage financing from climate investment funds and donor partners by supporting electrification of Ghana's remaining 15% located in the island communities."

The African Development Fund is the Bank Group's concessional funding arm. The African Development Bank has been an implementing entity of the Climate Investment Funds since 2010.

ENGIE Equatorial Inaugurates Game-changing Lolwe Mini-Grid In Uganda

ENGIE Equatorial announced that the Lolwe hybrid solar 600 kWp mini-grid, with integrated productive hub and e-mobility, has been inaugurated on Lolwe Island, Uganda, in the presence of Uganda's Minister of Energy Hon. Ruth Nankabirwa.

This joint project between ENGIE Energy Access and Equatorial Power Ltd. is the most advanced mini-grid on the African continent. It is the result of a strong African-European alliance and is a real game-changer for the energy landscape in Uganda and the continent at large.

This project, which sets new records in terms of value and replicability, connects over 3,000 households and more than 700 businesses, impacting 15,000 people and providing clean, reliable electricity, as well as a range of other services.

The project addresses the urgent needs of the local population, which lacks access to clean, reliable energy and clean water. The project is scalable to the entire Lake Victoria region (the largest lake in Africa) and can be rolled out across other African countries.

Beyond delivering affordable, reliable and renewable electricity, the Lolwe mini-grid features a productive hub that will transform raw materials into value-adding products, addressing basic needs that are currently insufficiently met on the islands. The hub includes water-pumping, distribution and purification services, modern fish-drying facilities and ice-making devices to conserve the daily catch of fish.

An electric mobility solution for fishing boats and motorcycles completes the integrated and green energy-enabled infrastructure on the site, for the benefit of users. ENGIE Equatorial is also providing business incubation and asset-financing services to empower the growth of local businesses. 

The Lolwe project is a truly scalable model – matching green infrastructure and ICT innovation to deliver real impact. This is the beginning of a "mini-grid 2.0" model that delivers more for investors and communities alike. It is a significant milestone and benchmark for the energy access space.

Riccardo Ridolfi, CEO of ENGIE Equatorial, says: "With the Lowe project, we demonstrate our vision of energy access: electricity to us is not an end but a means to offer other essential services like clean water, agro-processing, and electric mobility as well. This is the vision we believe will truly impact communities and bring financially and socially sustainable development to the African continent."

Gillian-Alexandre Huart, CEO of ENGIE Energy Access, comments: "The Lolwe mini-grid's distributed renewable technology and integrated business model will significantly improve the lives and economic perspectives of the underserved communities living far from the grid. The Lolwe mini-grid is setting the stage for the next generation of decentralized energy infrastructure, and will help to accelerate universal energy access."

With adequate institutional support, ENGIE Equatorial is committed to investing substantial amounts of capital to replicate this project across all the islands of Lake Victoria and beyond.

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