Renewable energy company, Darway Coast will benefit from a £10 million climate finance blending facility. This was announced by credit guarantor, InfraCredit on Wednesday, November 9, 2022, through an official statement, issued on Wednesday, November 9, 2022.
The statement highlighted the credit enhancement of Darway Coast Nigeria Limited’s green debt issue under a co-financing arrangement with the £10 million climate finance blending facility, funded by the United Kingdom Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), an initial transaction under InfraCredit’s clean energy funding programme.
The financing will be utilized to construct isolated solar mini-grids with a total capacity of 526.1 kilowatts (kW) in six communities without grid access within Rivers and Abia states in Southern Nigeria.
Project Benefit: The project, on completion, will electrify up to 7,711 unserved households and small businesses, create up to 497 temporary and permanent jobs, and avoid 4,856 tonnes of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions while enhancing access to renewable energy for productive uses.
The nominated projects and assets conform to the Climate Bonds Standard Solar Sector Criteria and the financing has been labeled and certified green by the Climate Bonds Initiative.
On February 2022, the United Kingdom minister for Africa, Vicky Ford, announced that the UK government was providing £10 million (N5.6 billion) through Infracredit to unlock institutional investment, such as pensions and insurance funds, into off-grid clean energy projects, including solar mini-grids in Nigeria.
De-risking investments: According to the official statement from InfraCredit, the program will aggregate, de-risk, and unlock domestic institutional investments to support eligible clean energy projects in Nigeria to contribute towards meeting the country’s universal electrification goal by 2030, and the sustainable development goal (SDG) 7 target of ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern energy for all, whilst putting the country on a path to achieve net zero emissions by 2060.
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Data on Nigeria’s renewable energy investments: According to GET-invest, clean energy investment in Nigeria has been inconsistent with fluctuation between single, double- and triple-digit millions of euros in annual investment since 2014.
The majority of this investment comes from foreign sources, accounting for 79% and 86% of investment into the sector in 2017 and 2018 respectively.
However, the Nigeria Renewable Energy Master Plan aims for the deployment of 4 million solar home systems by 2025.
Also, in Sustainable Energy For All (SE4All)’s Agenda for Nigeria, mini-grids and solar home systems combined, will add up to a capacity of 8 gigawatts (GW) by 2030, signifying 18% of total capacity.
Investment opportunities: According to InfraCredit, the UK-funded facility, through a blended instrument enabling domestic institutional investors to directly invest in a 7-year fixed rate local currency debt financing for the project, makes it the first-ever certified blended local currency green debt issue for a solar mini-grid project in Nigeria.
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It is expected that the facility will be increased through funding by other development partners to co-finance a pre-assessed initial pipeline of over $128 million that will mobilize at least N26.8 billion of domestic institutional capital to construct 22.7 megawatts (MW) of isolated off-grid renewable energy projects in 580 unserved communities across 32 states in Nigeria.
It will also connect 172,535 unserved households and small businesses, create 6,977 jobs and reduce 394,403 tons of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
For the record: InfraCredit signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) in August 2022 with the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) to help eliminate long-term financing bottlenecks for off-grid operators in the energy sector by enabling credit enhancement and financing to private sector mini-grid developers to enable adequate power generation and supply to underserved and unserved areas.