EU grants Nigeria N3.4b to boost power
The European Union (EU) approved yesterday a N3.4billion grant to Nigeria for the power sector.
The grant is meant for the Nigerian Energy Support Programme (NESP), dedicated to improving access to modern and sustainable energy sources in Nigeria.
The grant was jointly announced by the Federal Ministry of Power (FMP), the European Union (EU) and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit yesterday.
At the event, the EU Ambassador, Michel Arrion, said the release of the funds showed the European Union’s commitment to ensure that a greater number of Nigerians get access to electricity, as well as to a lasting partnership with the government and other donors in the power sector.
The Permanent secretary, Ambassador Igali, while inaugurating the event, said part of the government’s transformation agenda is to improve the supply and efficiency of electricity for Nigerian households and businesses, thereby improving the livelihoods of a greater number of the people.
He praised the EU, GIZ and the other development partners in their support of the power sector.
The Country Director to GIZ, Dr. Thomas Kirsch, said the EU funding will greatly help to support the implementation of the Nigerian transformation agenda, and scale-up activities aimed at improving access to energy supply for the population.
The Nigerian Energy Support Programme aims to improve the conditions for investments in renewable energy, energy efficiency and rural electrification.
The programme commenced in 2013 with about N2 billion support from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).
The N3,4 billion additional funding will allow NESP to continue to advise Nigerian institutions on the enabling policy, institutional and regulatory framework conditions at the Federal level, support improved rural electrification planning in five states and set up various demonstration projects, providing business models to increase energy access through sustainable energy resources.
Also, NESP will initiate and support vocational training and capacity development in the electricity sector.
The EU contribution to NESP is part of the N9billion grants in the Energising Access to Sustainable Energy in Nigeria (EASE) Programme, agreed with the Nigerian Government in February, 2014.