WASHINGTON, December 20, 2017 – The World Bank Group today approved an International Development Association (IDA)* guarantee of up to $2.8 million that will support Zambia in increasing its solar photovoltaic electricity generation capacity and diversify the country’s primary energy sources.
The $2.8 million guarantee will leverage approximately $48 million in private sector-led investment that will support the development of a 34 Megawatt peak solar photo-voltaic power plant by Ngonye Power Company Limited. The plant shall be situated in the Lusaka South Multi-Facility Economic Zone. The Ngonye Power Company Limited is a joint venture by Enel Green Power of Italy, and the Industrial Development Corporation of Zambia.
“The Ngonye project will increase and diversify Zambia’s renewable energy generation capacity and support government’s objective of diversifying the electricity generation mix to shield the country from climate induced shocks,” said Ina Ruthenberg, World Bank Country Manager for Zambia.
The Project is aligned with the Country Partnership Strategy between the World Bank Group and Zambia which identifies the need to fill critical infrastructure gaps and the role that the private sector can play to achieve this.
“With increased climate variability and the downward trend in capital costs, countries are increasingly looking at diversifying their primary sources for electricity generation through the addition of variable renewable energy,” said Mirlan Aldayarov, World Bank Senior Energy Specialist. “The Ngonye Solar photovoltaic project provides an important example in this regard.”
The guarantee for the Ngonye project is in addition to a similar facility that was approved by the World Bank Board in February 2016 for the West Lunga solar photo-voltaic project, also located in the Lusaka South Multi Facility Economic Zone.
* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 75 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change to the 1.5 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 113 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $18 billion over the last three years, with about 54 percent going to Africa.