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USTDA funds Nigeria mini-grid project with 200,000 women beneficiaries

Women in three Nigerian states will benefit gain energy access through the off-grid energy systems

The U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) granted funding to Nigeria’s Sosai Renewable Energies Company for a feasibility study to connect more than 200,000 women, farmers, and rural citizens to new solar-powered mini-grids in Kaduna, Kogi and Plateau states.

“USTDA is committed to promoting inclusive economic development, and bringing clean energy solutions to rural communities is an important component of our approach,” said Enoh T. Ebong, USTDA’s Acting Director. “Women entrepreneurs like [Sosai CEO] Habiba Ali are setting a vision for Nigeria’s energy future that USTDA enthusiastically supports.”

This USTDA grant will support a huge step forward for Nigeria in meeting its rural electrification goals

Sosai CEO Habiba Ali

The USTDA-funded feasibility study will include site surveys, preliminary engineering, economic and financial analyses and an assessment of the project’s likely developmental impacts on rural women. USTDA’s study also will create business opportunities for U.S. equipment and services suppliers in Nigeria’s minigrid sector, while supporting up to 20 megawatts of new solar power in rural communities.

“This announcement is emblematic of the U.S.-Nigeria relationship as the USTDA grant supports the development of energy for productive use and promotes inclusion for women and rural dwellers. Working together, we can solve today’s greatest challenges through projects like this,” said Mary Beth Leonard, U.S. Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“For Sosai, the benefit of the USTDA grant to our company is immense, positioning us for greater growth and greater possibilities in the future,” added Sosai CEO Habiba Ali.

U.S energy access drive in Africa

The funding for Nigeria’s Sosai Renewable Energies Company adds to one of numerous renewable energy and energy access initiatives that the United States government is pursuing in Africa. Another US government energy access initiative on the African continent is the Power Africa initiative being implemented by USAID. Power Africa’s goat is  to add more than 30,000 megawatts (MW) of cleaner, more efficient electricity generation capacity to power African businesses and homes.

In Nigeria, USTDA has supported the successful roll-out of mini-grids and microgrids in rural and peri-urban communities using U.S. technology. The Agency has an active portfolio of three other ongoing solar mini-grid activities in Nigeria. Collectively, we expect these projects to support energy access for more than 66,000 households in Nigeria and help Nigeria meet its goal of universal electrification.

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