It contributes to energy-saving and low-carbon development, strengthening energy security, and increased access to energy.
West Africa is experiencing a growing energy crisis, which hinders economic and social development and affects low-income communities. This crisis is characterized by:
- A sharp increase in energy demand driven by economic growth, while access to energy remains limited (the rate of access to electricity averages around 30%, with wide disparities between urban and rural areas) and production costs are high;
- A production deficit, which leads to outages that are very damaging to economic activity;
- A strong dependence on fossil fuel imports.
Faced with these challenges, the private sector suffers from a lack of regulation for the development of renewable energies and energy efficiency, and a lack of human and material resources and technical skills to implement its investments.
Agence Française de Développement (AFD) has decided to set up a dedicated credit line in the WAEMU zone. It is based on the results of a market study, which concludes that there is a demand which needs to be stimulated. AFD used a regional credit line in East Africa as a basis, and an ongoing credit line in Senegal with a similar objective. The credit line allocated to several commercial banks allows them to lend to companies, which themselves implement an energy efficiency or renewable energy generation project, on their behalf, for third parties, or for the grid.
The Technical Assistance program comprises three components:
Creation of a pipeline of eligible and bankable energy efficiency and renewable energy projects:
- Present the credit line and Technical Assistance program, organize a launch in each country;
- Mobilize professional associations and consulting firms;
- Analyze the portfolios of banks to identify potential projects;
- Communicate on the program, support the creation of a dedicated website, organize workshops in each country.
Assistance in the development of energy efficiency and renewable energy projects:
- Define and notify the eligibility of projects for loans from the credit line;
- Assist companies and project initiators in the preparation of projects, preparatory tasks (definition of a list of standardized operations, drafting of a procedures manual), management of a budget earmarked to cofinance the services of the project manager in the broad sense, monitoring and control of studies, participation in the preparation of the first technical studies;
- Monitoring of the funded projects, operations for the acceptance of works, works contracts for the cofinanced studies.
Build the capacities of banks for the identification and analysis of projects:
- Sensitize and train certain executives from partner banks;
- Assist banks in the appraisal of loan applications;
- Inform banks about the technical eligibility of projects.
- Create a portfolio of eligible and bankable Energy Efficiency (EE) and Renewable Energy (ReN) projects.
- Develop and finance eligible and bankable EE and ReN projects.
- Gain expertise for banks and the confidence required to finance EE/ReN projects.