United Kingdom to support solar energy industry in Uganda
The British High Commissioner to Uganda, HE Peter West has announced a new partnership between the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) and the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) in Uganda.
The partnership aims to support universal energy access in Uganda by providing assistance to the Uganda Solar Energy Association.
Head of DFID Uganda, Jennie Barugh said: "I am proud that the UK is at the forefront of this energy transformation that enables the less privileged to access clean energy to improve their lives. A well-functioning USEA will lead to an increase in the number, performance and investment in solar home system companies. Combined with other initiatives of the ‘On and Off-Grid Small Scale Renewable Energy in Uganda’ project, this work will contribute to improved clean energy access for over 200,000 households and businesses."
In Uganda, more than 70 percent of the population does not have access to electricity. In rural areas, more than half the population still use kerosene lamps to light their homes. Lack of power compromises people’s ability to improve their lives.
Uganda is on the verge of the off-grid energy revolution and is one of the key markets for off-grid solar in Sub-Saharan Africa. There are over 200 local and international companies active in the sector.
To enable an environment for growth, the private sector needs to be united and co-ordinated in its approach. As an existing membership body for the private sector, the Uganda Solar Energy Association (USEA) offers an excellent opportunity to represent the interests of the Ugandan off-grid solar energy industry.
With DFID support, the UNCDF CleanStart programme will assist USEA to build on the work already achieved through the Uganda Energy Africa Compact. The announcement was made at an off-grid solar expo hosted by USEA where more than 40 companies were exhibited a wide range of solar-powered innovations.