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AfDB backs Rwanda's work to increase electricity access, reliability

Transmission lines. Author: Nayu Kim. License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic.

October 2 (Renewables Now) - The African Development Bank (AfDB) said on Monday it will provide USD 266 million (EUR 230.7m) in loans to support Rwanda’s efforts to boost access to electricity and improve the reliability of supply.

The funds will go for the country’s Scaling Up Electricity Access Program (SEAP II), which is also expected to increase on-grid and off-grid access to renewable energy for households and commercial use. More specifically, the loans will support the construction of 795 km of medium-voltage and 7,317 km of low-voltage lines, to help achieve connectivity throughout the country and bring electricity to unserved communities.

The country aims to achieve universal electricity access by 2024, using a combination of on-grid and off-grid solutions, like solar home systems. In seven years, access to electricity in Rwanda has increased from 18% to 44% as at end of June 2018.

The financing to be provided is divided into a USD-192-million AfDB loan and a USD-74-million credit from the African Development Fund. The sum represents 8.2% of Rwanda’s budget for the Energy Sector Strategy Plan. The funding from ADB is for three fiscal years and it will be disbursed using the Results Based Financing (RBF) model.

The SEAP II loan raises the bank’s energy portfolio in Rwanda from USD 184 million to USD 450 million.

Rwanda in 2013 received USD 46 million in financing for the first phase of SEAP, which is now 90% complete and ahead of schedule.

 (USD 1.0 = EUR 0.87)

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