Brussels & Lusaka, 28 June 2021 - A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between the Solar Industry Association of Zambia (SIAZ) and the Alliance for Rural Electrification (ARE). The MoU sets out the shared goals of the two organisations to support the transition to renewable energy sources in the country’s efforts towards achievement of universal access to energy, with a particular focus on the abundant solar energy potential in Zambia.

The associations will work together on a number of activities, including joint advocacy to create a conducive and enabling environment for a sustainable decentralised solar energy market and to promote the use of renewable energy technologies in Zambia by means of knowledge and information dissemination, networking between public and private stakeholders, institutional capacity building as well as targeted business development and market intelligence support for decentralised renewable energy (DRE) companies.

In this regard, the associations aim to cooperate on targeted skills development and capacity building activities for renewable energy stakeholders in Zambia to create local jobs and enhance the capacity of the sector to raise increased financing for renewable energy projects and businesses. This will be achieved by spearheading in-person or virtual “DRE Investment Academies” or similar trainings for Zambian and international DRE project developers and other stakeholders, with the aim to provide additional fundraising and technical support.

Finally, the MoU states that the partners will support services for Zambian renewable energy actors who work to address energy access, energy security and climate change challenges in Zambia and conduct research to foster the market for renewable energy technologies.

SIAZ Chairperson, Matanda Mwewa, said: "SIAZ is excited to have this formal partnership with ARE. We are confident that this partnership will help the solar industry and its members to create an enabling environment for a sustainable decentralised solar energy market and to promote the use of renewable energy technologies in Zambia. SIAZ recognises that the industry has challenges, but in those challenges there also lie opportunities. We believe that the partnership between SIAZ and ARE will have a mutually beneficial feedback loop, which will allow both to learn from each other and develop next generation solutions that will shape the future for Zambia and Africa at large.’’

ARE CEO, David Lecoque, commented: “We are delighted to sign this MoU with SIAZ. The cooperation fits squarely within ARE’s goal to increase country-level actions and support to boost clean energy access, also in Zambia. It is an outcome of the virtual study tours that ARE organises with Solar Power Europe and National Renewable Energy Associations, supported by the European Programme GET.invest. We strongly believe that we share common values to take concrete steps forward to expand clean and affordable energy access in Zambia.”

ARE Africa Lead, Gabriele Pammesberger, added: “We are very pleased to enter into this partnership with SIAZ to jointly foster the development of a thriving, private sector-driven renewable energy sector in Zambia that contributes to a green, sustainable and inclusive transformation, and improved livelihoods and climate resilience, especially of rural populations. Knowledge exchange, skills development and capacity building will lie at the heart of our cooperation.

 

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