Nigeria has adopted an approach to directly engage with prospective project developers to set up renewable energy projects. The government has recently finalised a new agreement to set up a lot more solar power capacity.
In the latest round of negotiations, the Nigerian government has received pledges from three companies to set up a total of 1 GW solar power capacity across the country. The entire program will include large utility-scale power projects as well as distributed power projects.
The agreements have been signed between the Nigerian government and Solius NGPC, Peoples Home Association, and Solar Force Nigeria Limited.
Peoples Home Association announced that it will set up 500 MW of capacity across the country. This capacity will be added in five tranches of 100 MW each. Solar Force Nigeria Limited will set up 200 small-scale projects of 1 MW each across as many villages.
Solius NGC is expected to set up the balance 300 MW capacity. However, the size and type of the projects is unknown. The company will also set up a training centre for power sector professionals. Peoples Home Association will also set up solar research centers across universities in Nigeria to help generate about 10,000 jobs in the solar power sector.
The Nigerian government, on its part, has pledged full assistance to these companies and will provide them with land and a transmission network, and it will help the companies meet regulatory requirements for setting up the projects.
With these fresh MoUs, the total solar power capacity pledged by various companies in Nigeria this year has crossed 5 GW.
Earlier this year, SkyPower FAS Energy signed a series of agreements to set up 3 GW of solar power capacity in the country. This capacity would be added through utility-scale projects and represents an investment worth $5 billion.
In late November, two US-based companies pledged to set up a total solar power capacity of 1.2 GW by 2017. The projects will require a cumulative investment of $2 billion dollars and once operational will generate enough power to meet the demands of 1 million homes in the country.