This ambitious utility-scale project in Burundi centres round the construction of a 7.5MW solar PV power plant that is expected to increase the country’s generation capacity by 15%.
The development in Mubuga, in the Gitega Province, will also be the first grid-connected solar project by an IPP in Burundi, and will be the first renewable energy project to design a bankable PPA and Concession Agreement, paving the way for other renewable energy projects in the country.
Project developers Gigawatt Global Burundi SA estimate that the plant will be able to supply the electricity needs of around 87,600 people and businesses, and provide 300 part-time jobs during construction and up to 50 full-time jobs during the operational phase for cleaning, security and general maintenance.
The developers also plan to construct a scalable mini-grid scheme alongside the grid-based project for the local community, and will provide yearly support to the community to improve economic potential and living standards.
REPP is providing development funding and construction financing, which will enhance the overall economics of the project and allow for improved access to long-term financing from debt providers and equity investors.
This project has a strong demonstration effect, especially in terms of building capacity within government to negotiate and secure PPAs with IPPs. It is expected the project will strengthen political buy-in and support for small-medium scale renewable energy projects in Burundi.
Contracted date: 7 December 2016
Lending type: Development capital
REPP funding: Undisclosed
The scale of impact the Mubuga project will have on ordinary people’s lives and businesses cannot be overestimated, and in the process will mark the dawn of a new era for renewable energy in Burundi. REPP’s support has made this possible. The project will be the model that will be followed by other foreign investors and will raise the image of Burundi for long-term investment by international financiers.- Honourable Jean Jacques Nyenimigabu, senior adviser to the president and former MP from Mubuga