About 150, 000 households in Malawi are set to have access to electricity in the next three years following the launch of the Solar Home System Kick-Starter program for Malawi.
The Programe, which is being funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), aims at working with the private sector in order to increase the country`s renewable energy generation capacity.
In an interview with YFM, Power Africa Energy Advisor at USAID Andrew Spahn said the project supports companies with an intention of assisting provision of affordable electricity sources for off-grid communities in the country.
“Essentially, we are working with the private sector in its full force to deliver more solar home systems across Malawi,” he said.
Meanwhile, Chief Director in the Department of Energy under the Ministry of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining Chimwemwe Banda has commended the commencement of the project citing that it will reach out to the intended masses in the rural settings.
“To government, this is a plus, because we are going to slowly close the gap that is there by working with other investors and Independent power producers when it comes to access of electricity in the country, especially people in rural areas,” said Banda.
Already, Kick-Starter Program has supported around 3, 000 connections which represents an up to 1% increase in the number of households with electricity across the country.
On her part, Regional Energy Officer at USAID Southern Africa Ashley King said the programme will assist in stimulating access to electricity among the targeted households.
“The programme will help in accelerating access to electricity and also increase the supply of generation and transmission,” said King.
The current electrification rate in Malawi stands at about 11 percent in the country, with only 4 percent access rate in rural areas