The 4th International Off-Grid Renewable Energy Conference and Exhibition in Singapore gathered more than 300 high-level policy, intergovernmental, private sector and non-governmental participants from around the world. Delegates shared ideas and insights on the future of standalone and mini-grid renewable energy solutions and are identifying ways to scale-up their adoption.

Among the central themes in discussion is the challenge of connecting financing and investment with business owners and electricity consumers in developing countries – many of whom lack the resources and experience necessary to successfully secure finance. With standalone and mini-grid renewable energy solutions fuelling new business opportunities and supporting improved livelihoods for both sellers and consumers, participants have heard various perspectives on the challenges and opportunities of a decentralised energy system.

IRENA Director-General, Adnan Z. Amin, outlined in his opening speech that the business case for off-grid renewables had never been stronger – a fact widely recognised by the private sector, from start-up entrepreneurs to large scale international firms. He stressed that what will bring power to the un-electrified is not development aid, but viable and sustainable commercial activity.

To power the unelectrified, ARE Executive Director, Marcus Wiemann, stressed that advanced frameworks in terms of appropriate regulations and more de-risking schemes for the private sector are needed to deliver timely on SDG objectives. This was another point the off-grid business community widely agreed on as the conference continued to share experiences and showcase good practices. 

ARE organised the IOREC Exhibition in parallel with the Conference. The Exhibition was meant to give the private sector the opportunity to present their products and projects. Trina Solar, for example, who was among the 12 exhibitors present to showcase their technologies and know-how at the forefront of off-grid renewables, exposed their latest hybrid micro-grid solution for 14 islands in the Maldives. Find out more about the additional exhibitors: FRIEM, GFM, DRD Myanmar, GIZ Myanmar, International Copper Association, Plug the Sun, Practical Action, Rahimafrooz Solar, SparkMeter, Studer Innotec, Tiger Power and Windkinetic.

IOREC took place alongside other high-level discussions during Singapore International Energy Week including the Association of South East Asian Nations Energy (ASEAN) Ministers Meeting, chaired by Singapore and was co-located with the Asia Clean Energy Summit. The key highlight was the launch of the new floating solar initiative.

The two-day event was followed by the Renewable Energy Solutions for Healthcare Facilities conference, organised by IRENA and the ADB Energy for All Investor Forum highlighting important trends and best practices in the energy access sector on 2 November.