SÃO TOMÉ AND PRINCIPE: AfDB finances energy transition programme

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SÃO TOMÉ AND PRINCIPE: AfDB finances energy transition programme©Sonpichit Salangsing/Shutterstock

The Government of São Tomé and Principe has reached an agreement with the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group for €12.46 million (more than 303 million Santomean Dobras) to support the Energy Transition and Institutional Support Programme (ETISP).


Within 5 years, the electricity network should be more stable in São Tomé and Príncipe. The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group has given a boost to the Energy Transition and Institutional Support Programme (ETISP) launched in January 2020 in the country. The financing, worth €12.46 million, represents more than 303 million dobras of santomeans. This considerable support will cover the major part of the programme, which in reality costs around €13 million (almost 317 million São Toméan Dobras). The rest of the funding, i.e. more than €550,000 (13.43 million São Toméan Dobras) will be supplemented by the government of this Central African country.

The ETISP assets

The Energy Transition and Institutional Support Programme (ETISP) will run for a period of 5 years. The Energy Transition and Institutional Support Program aims, among other things, to inject electricity from renewable energy sources into the São Tomé and Príncipe grid and to promote green growth. Currently, the rate of access to electricity in São Tomé and Principe is 70% due to the ageing electricity infrastructure. This situation forces companies to operate with diesel generators. Through the ETISP, the country plans to increase the share of renewable energy in the electricity mix to 50%, from the current 5%.

The ETISP funding will be used to renovate the Papagaio hydroelectric plant in Santo António. The facility has a capacity of 1 megawatt. The new programme will also allow the hybridisation of one of the main thermal power plants based in Santo Amaro, in the Lobata district of northeastern São Tomé Island, with the addition of a small solar power plant. It will also support the implementation of an energy efficiency programme.

The direct beneficiaries of the Energy Transition and Institutional Support Programme will be the populations of the island of São Tomé and the island of Principe, as well as the companies and industries established in the territory. New employment opportunities will be created with the stabilisation of the national electricity grid and the implementation of the energy transition programme. The AfDB says it will make available to the country its experience in financing and developing energy projects, while paying particular attention to monitoring local capacity building.

Inès Magoum

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