The European Union (EU) has committed Euro 5m towards the extension of renewable energy support and electricity services to underserved communities in Uganda. According to Lennart Deridder, Head of the Green Economy section at the EU Delegation in Uganda, EDFI ElectriFI, the Electrification Financing Initiative funded by the EU launched the facility designated to Uganda.
Speaking at the Renewable Energy Conference 2022 (REC22) in Kampala, Lennart said that in December 2020, the EU and EDFI ElectriFI agreed on establishing a dedicated window for Uganda, with funding of Euro 5m to be invested in renewable energy companies that are active in Uganda. “This financing comes in different financial instruments, there will be a commercial aspect but obviously it comes from the donor community with a component of grant and also will hell in accessing extra funding,” he said.
The initiative was established in partnership with EU Delegation and host government, ElectriFI Country Windows offer dedicated funding for selected countries in line with national objectives. This will enable Uganda’s capacity to usher in its electricity-generating potential and set up its efforts to mobilise renewable energy resources while tapping into private-sector funding.
“We are discussing with the government to develop a broader scope for different private sector initiatives in Uganda that still require additional funding to those how can apply for the facility,” Mr. Deridder said. This will contribute to the efforts to unlock significant economic, social and environmental development opportunities and to tackle various challenges such as loss of forest, biodiversity and soil fertility due to massive charcoal use.
Jan Sadek, EU Ambassador to Uganda commented, “To transition to renewable energy, we need mechanisms that are not only ecofriendly but are good and sustain communities. Europe will continue to support Uganda’s renewable energy programs as the country develops its oil but in an environmentally-cautious way.”
Brian Isabirye, the Commissioner of Renewable Energy in the Ministry of energy said that there is need to build a homogenous ecosystem in renewable technologies. “Technologies’ are still lacking and there’s need for intervention because we must demonstrate that this technology works and come up with innovative ways to attract investors,” he said. Last year, the EU launched a new European strategy to boost smart, clean and secure links to digital, energy and transport sectors and to strengthen health, education and research systems across the world.