International Finance Corporation (IFC) and the Government of Canada have joined hands to provide $25m in finance for the second Scaling Solar project under development in Zambia.


Image: Solar Farm. Photo: Courtesy of ced dec/

This allows for the construction to start on a solar plant that will provide clean and affordable power to ease the country’s energy shortages.

The financing package arranged by IFC includes senior loans of up to $10m from IFC and up to $12m from the IFC-Canada Climate Change Program, plus $2.5m in interest-rate swaps from IFC and a $2.8m partial risk guarantee from the World Bank’s International Development Agency. The European Investment Bank is also providing $11.75m in loans to the project that will be built near the capital Lusaka by Enel.

Scaling Solar is a World Bank Group initiative that offers competitive bidding and simplified procurement for grid-tied photovoltaic power, even in small markets. The program is supporting the development of more than 1GW of solar power across Africa.

IFC CEO Philippe Le Houérou said: “Scaling Solar has set a new standard for the development of solar power in Africa, starting with these two projects in Zambia.

“We are very pleased to see these projects moving toward construction as the program continues to expand across Africa and into new regions.”

Construction on the first Scaling Solar project in Zambia, under development by Neoen/First Solar, is expected to start shortly. That project also located near Lusaka has a tariff equivalent to $0.06 per kilowatt. The project built by Enel will provide power to the Zambian grid at the equivalent of $0.078 per kilowatt hour — also one of the lowest prices for electricity in the region.

Zambia’s Industrial Development Corporation CEO Mateyo C. Kaluba said: “It is exciting to see this project move toward construction. We are looking forward to continued engagement with Scaling Solar on a new round of projects as we continue to advance new, clean, affordable energy sources in Zambia.”

Source: Company Press Release