Business research and consulting firm Frost and Sullivan has claimed that Sub-Saharan Africa’s off-grid PV sector is set to expand by 10% between 2009 and 2015. The news is a boon to the continent’s renewable energy sector, which is experiencing increasing governmental demand for small scale projects.
“South Africa and Kenya, leaders in the RE (renewable energy) industry, have announced feed-in tariffs for RE projects along with other regional governments that are currently investigating opportunities for RE projects,” said Frost and Sullivan’s Cornelis van der Waal. “Many developmental agencies consider small-scale RE projects as the most feasible solution for accelerated rural electrification and therefore are increasingly investing in medium-sized projects, especially wind and solar projects.”
Due to the increased importance of energy diversification, the Sub-Saharan African renewable energy market as a whole is expected to triple in investment value between 2010 and 2015. And despite the slow pace of regulatory reform and the monopolies held by state utilities, countries such as South Africa, Kenya, Nigeria and Uganda are all seriously exploring the possibility of establishing solar power systems.
“South Africa is expected to approve the renewable energy feed-in tariff for grid-connected solar power in 2010,” added Van der Waal. “This will allow companies with local manufacturing capacity to capitalise on the feed-in tariff laws.”