Engie Energy Access, the subsidiary of the French energy group Engie, has inaugurated a solar PV mini-grid in Nigeria. The off-grid solar facility is being developed in the Gbangba region in Niger State and has the capacity of delivering 90 kWp of solar power.
Engie, which specializes in decentralized solutions for electricity access, has successfully launched its first project in Nigeria. The solar mini-grid will benefit the locals of Gbangba community with an electricity supply for the first time ever and empower over 300 customers, comprising households, micro and small enterprises (MSEs), etc. The mini-grid will directly impact the lives of 1,500 people.
The mini-grid launch ceremony was attended by several personalities, including the Governor of Niger State, Abubakar Sani Bello, French ambassador, Emmanuelle Blatmann, and the Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Mamman Musa. The presence of these eminent personalities testifies to the support of local authorities to the Engie’s project.
Bankole Cardoso, MD of Engie Energy Access Nigeria, said at the launching event that Nigeria’s electricity challenge remains a huge gap that needs to be filled in the country’s objective of fulfilling its full potential as a nation. The power challenge in the country requires private sector involvement, and the construction of the mini-grid in Gbangba demonstrates how private investment can help to address major gaps in the energy sector.
“This mini-grid will boost farmers’ yields and food production by powering irrigation pumps, grain mills, wood and metal workshops, telecommunication towers and other processing plants,” Cardoso added.
Gillian-Alexandre Huart, CEO of ENGIE Energy Access, said the mini-grid demonstrates their strong commitment to meeting the growing decentralized energy needs in Nigeria. Engie plans to install 100+ solar mini-grids across the country in the near future.
“The launch of our first mini-grid in Nigeria means that we have now installed mini-grids in five African countries, with other ENGIE Energy Access mini-grid sites in Benin, Uganda, Tanzania and Zambia. Our plan is to further expand our mini-grid business on the continent over the coming months and years – adding other countries to our footprint.
As part of the Nigeria Electricity Project (NEP), Engie Energy Access has signed an agreement with the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) for the deployment of its decentralized electricity solutions in rural Nigeria. The grant provided by REA also covers the recently commissioned mini-grid in Gbangba.