Scaling Solar in Zambia

solar panels
Photo courtesy IFC

In July 2015, President, Lungu directed Zambia’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC)to pursue a solar power program to help relieve an ongoing electricity deficit across the country, resulting partly from low water levels at the Kariba Dam hydropower facility and from increasing demand.

Heeding President Lungu’s call, IDC engaged the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a Power Africa partner and member of the World Bank Group; to increase the country’s solar power capacity by competitively attracting solar power developers and helping create a viable local market for solar power. The result is Scaling Solar, an initiative that supports rapid delivery of utility-scale solar photovoltaic (PV) systems to smaller African markets by Independent Power Producers (IPPs) at competitive prices.

Now, as home to the first Scaling Solar (PV) program in sub-Saharan Africa, Zambia will begin developing two 50 MW sites, which will contribute 100 MW to the 600 MW goal. Power Africa and USAID Zambia are supporting the World Bank and IFC by providing over USD $2 million for the Scaling Solar program. This support will help finance the critical costs necessary to establish and implement a transparent, competitive bidding process to attract qualified solar power developers and to build institutional capacity and catalyze market growth.

Power Africa will provide an additional $4 million for Scaling Solar efforts in other sub-Saharan African countries to work toward its goals of increasing new solar generation by 3,000-4,000 MW by 2030.

Click here for more information about the IFC Scaling Solar Program