NIGERIA: Lumos receives grant from REA for solar kit distribution

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NIGERIA: Lumos receives grant from REA to distribute solar kits ©James Wagstaff/Shutterstock

Solar kit supplier Lumos Global received the first part of a grant from the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) to continue the distribution of its solar home systems in Nigeria.

The Rural Electrification Agency (REA) has begun to implement its new strategy to accelerate access to electricity in Nigeria. It has therefore decided to subsidise the Dutch company Lumos Global with 75 million euros.

With the availability of these funds, the Amsterdam-based company has revised its objectives upwards. It now plans to provide solar kits to one million households by 2025, the end date of the REA grant. Nigeria has a population of more than 200 million people, 60% of whom have no access to electricity. “The market is huge (…) Having help for capital expenditures through these kinds of grants is a great help,” says Alistair Gordon, Lumos’s Executive Director.

Its kit typically consists of a solar panel, an inverter and a storage system that provides electricity to households after sunset. The company also supplies energy saving bulbs, charging stations for mobile phones and plugs that can support a radio, TV or fan.

To obtain this service, you must pay a subscription and the installation of the solar home system. Then, you have to pay a monthly invoice via the mobile money of the South African telephone operator MTN. This solution is very suitable for rural areas but Lumos has chosen to sell its solar kits also in cities where some deprived areas are not sufficiently connected to the grid.

“REA, in collaboration with the federal government, has obtained funds from the World Bank ($350 million) and the AfDB ($200 million). This funding will help us connect communities, schools and homes to electricity,” said Damilola Ogunbiyi, REA’s Executive Director, recently. It has decided to award grants to seven companies operating in Nigeria.

Jean Marie Takouleu

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