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ISA to provide grant worth $50,000 to member countries for solar projects

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The International Solar Alliance (ISA) has announced that it will provide a grant of up to $50,000 to Least Developed Countries (LDC) and Small Island Developing States (SID) member countries to carry out Demonstration Solar Projects.

The Detailed Project Reports (DPRs) of 11 ISA member countries from this group - Comoros, Ethiopia, Fiji, Guyana, Jamaica, Kiribati, Malawi, Senegal, Togo, Tonga, and Niger - have been formally approved by Dr. Ajay Mathur, Director General of ISA.

In line with this, a formal signing-in ceremony was hosted by ISA at its Fourth Assembly.

Further, the Demonstration Solar Projects initiative has four objectives i.e. to provide technical and financial support to LDCs and SIDS Member Countries of the ISA to implement demonstration projects; to support resilience building in key sectors such as agriculture and health in the backdrop of the COVID-19 crisis; to create markets for innovative solar technologies and to increase their access in LDCs and SIDS Member Countries; and to foster innovation in business model, finance, technology, and implementation modalities.

Stating on the occasion, Dr. Ajay Mathur, Director General of ISA, said, "the ISA is continuously looking at ways and means to support the socio-economic goals of our member countries. These grants reflect our commitment to their accelerated solarization. The projects supported through these grants will also help identify the modifications in national policies and processes that will enable fast replication."

As of date, expressions of interest to initiative solar demonstration projects from 27 Member Countries have been received, and 77 bilateral meetings have been organized with the Member Countries to discuss the initiative in detail and to provide clarifications and assistance to develop the detailed project reports.

The project proposals received from member countries include 17 countries from the African region - Benin, Burundi, Burkina Faso, Comoros, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Gambia, Mali, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Niger, Senegal, Seychelles, Sudan, Togo, and Uganda; six countries from the Asia-Pacific region - Cambodia, Fiji, Kiribati, Nauru, Samoa, and Tonga; and four countries from Latin America and the Caribbean region - Cuba, Guyana, Jamaica, and Suriname.

Seven-member countries - Burundi, Comoros, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Fiji, Senegal, and Sudan - have opted for demonstration project implementation by the ISA. These projects will be implemented through NTPC, which is ISA's Project Management Consultancy. 13 Member Countries - Benin, Cambodia, Cuba, Guyana, Jamaica, Kiribati, Mali, Mozambique, Niger, Suriname, Tonga, Togo, and Uganda- have opted for direct implementation. The other seven Member Countries are yet to decide the implementation modality. However, DPRs for 18 out of 27 countries are being prepared by NTPC.

The proposal on the ISA's initiative of providing technical and financial support of up to $50,000 for financing 47 demonstration solar projects for LDCs and SIDS Member Countries was approved during the Third Assembly of the ISA. The initiative was earlier recommended by the Third Standing Committee on 27 May 2020. 

Author : Debi Dash
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