Lebanon has received a substantial financial contribution from China aimed at introducing solar energy solutions to address the persistent electricity shortages plaguing the country’s telecommunications sector.
The Ministry of Telecommunications confirmed this development, stating that Ogero, the state-owned telecommunications service, will benefit from over $8 million in funding. This funding will be used to equip more than 830 of Ogero’s sites with solar panels, offering a much-needed power source in light of years of electricity deficiencies affecting the nation’s internet and phone services.
The Ministry of Telecommunications acknowledged the significant challenges faced by the telecommunications sector due to the ongoing financial and economic crisis, including currency devaluation and power outages.
As a result of extensive efforts, the ministry and the Ogero Authority secured a generous donation from China exceeding $8 million to facilitate the deployment of clean solar energy at more than 380 sites under the authority’s purview.
The solar energy project is anticipated to become operational by the summer of 2024. To secure the necessary financing from the central bank, a fundraising campaign will be initiated in the coming days.
The national electricity grid, operated by Électricité du Liban (EDL), has been struggling to provide more than a few hours of power daily. Consequently, Ogero has had to rely on backup generators to maintain its services, impacting various sectors, including government institutions, hospitals, military facilities, and educational institutions.
This shift toward solar energy represents one of Lebanon’s initial steps in embracing green energy initiatives to tackle the deteriorating electricity sector. Many homes, healthcare facilities, and businesses have resorted to installing solar photovoltaic panels to secure a reliable power supply amidst the crisis.