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On Thursday, 20 June, 2019, Agence Française De Développement (AFD) and Energy Commission (EC) signed a Technical Assistance Facility (TAF) to support local banks and other key stakeholders towards the development of Energy Efficiency (EE) and Renewable Energy (RE) projects under the Sustainable Use of Natural Resources and Energy Finance programme (SUNREF) in Ghana. This programme emanated from the conclusion of a feasibility study financed by AFD, which highlighted among others the urgent need for investments in RE & EE sector in Ghana.

During this ceremony, the EU Ambassador, H.E. Mrs. Diana Acconcia, and the French Ambassador, H.E. Mrs. Anne-Sophie Avé, highlighted the main features of the SUNREF programme, which will be the first comprehensive green finance project to be deployed at this scale in Ghana. Senior officials from the European Union, the French Embassy and AFD attended the event. The EC had its Board, led by its Chairman, Prof. George Panyin Hagan; the Executive Secretary, Dr. Alfred Ofosu Ahenkorah; the Head, Legal, Cecilia Agbenyaga; and Kofi Agyarko, Director for Renewable Energy, Energy Efficiency and Climate Change in attendance.

The purpose of SUNREF is to mobilize Ghanaian financial institutions to finance private sector investments in green technologies in the RE and EE market segment in Ghana. These partner financial institutions will provide green credit loans to finance small and medium scale renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in Ghana. The SUNREF Ghana programme will promote the development of a low carbon economy by financing the development of RE and EE solutions.

This intervention from AFD forms an integral part of the mandate of the Commission in the promotion and development of renewable energy and energy efficiency initiatives in the country. Over the years, the Commission has successfully developed regulations and implemented various RE/EE initiatives, which have changed the landscape of RE and EE in Ghana. The visibility of these interventions have also projected the image and positioned the Energy Commission to attract additional funding support to further its promotional activities as is witnessed today.

The SUNREF programme in Ghana is a comprehensive one, which focuses on three pillars:

a) Credit lines financed by AFD of up to EUR 30 million with local banks;

b) A Technical Assistance Facility with support from the European Union Africa Infrastructure Trust Fund (EU-AITF) of EUR 2 million;           and

c) An investment grant scheme (also funded by the EU-AITF) of EUR 2.4 million, to provide additional incentives to green investments.

In addition, SUNREF offers a platform under the TAF to build capacity of EC, key stakeholders and partner banks of advance technologies and methods allowing them to offer better advice and products to their customers. The programme is well designed to help small and medium-sized companies in Ghana to seize the opportunities created by this intervention from AFD to invest in RE and EE projects (at least 35 M€ of investments to be supported). The outcome of these projects will immensely contribute to reduction in energy consumption (up to 7GWh per year) and increase the share of RE in the overall energy mix and consequently contribute to reduction of CO2 emissions.

The SUNREF’s Technical Assistance Facility is a 3-year programme jointly developed by AFD and EC with the support of the European Union funds to reduce the impact on climate change. The Energy Commission will host and manage the Technical Assistance Facility, while AFD will finance directly the partner banks.

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