The European Investment Bank (EIB), along with other investors, has contributed $200m to African Renewable Energy Fund (AREF), a renewable energy fund focused on sub-Saharan Africa, to support small- to medium-scale independent power producers (IPPs) in the region.


The funding will be used for the development of renewable energy projects including small hydro, wind, geothermal, solar, biomass and waste gas.

The investor group includes African Development Bank (AfDB), Sustainable Energy for Africa (SEFA) in addition to the Global Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Fund (GEEREF).

The Kenya-based AREF is managed by Berkeley Energy Africa Limited (Berkeley Energy), a fund manager focused on developing and investing in renewable energy projects in emerging markets

Berkeley Energy’s Partner and Co-Founder, Alastair Vere Nicoll said: "We are very pleased to have reached our target fund raising and look forward to continuing our work focusing on the technical delivery of our projects with our project partners from concept to generating reality."

AREF, which closed $100m financing in March 2014, has already developed four renewable energy projects and has additional pipeline of projects under development.

AfDB is the lead sponsor with $55m equity while other investors include West African Development Bank (BOAD), Ecowas Bank for Investment and Development (EBID), Nederlandse Financierings-Maatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (FMO), Calvert Investments, Berkeley Energy and ABREC.

African Development Bank Energy and Climate Change Department director Alex Rugamba said: "AfDB is pleased to see that AREF is now fully capitalized to deliver on its pan-African mandate."

EIB vice-president Pim van Ballekom said: "Our combined backing for the African Renewable Energy Fund will provide both financial support and share technical experience essential for smaller renewable schemes being implemented for the first time."

Image: The African Renewable Energy Fund initially secured $100m loan in 2014. Photo: courtesy. Photo: courtesy of African Development Bank Group.