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Badilisha Lugha KISWAHILI

World Bank assists REA to electrify rural area

7th April 2012

The World Bank in collaboration with GVEP International (Global Village Energy Partnership) and Tanzania’s Rural Energy Agency (REA), is implementing an energy programme known as ESME Pre-Investment Technical Supporta ined at electrifying the rural areas.

According to a statement issued in Dar es Salaam on Thursday, the programme will build the capacity of SMEs by assisting them to complete feasibility studies, plans and environmental and social impact assessments (ESIAs) for energy projects.

The statement said the key challenge facing energy enterprises in the region is lack of capacity to access financing.

GVEP International is a non-profit organisation working to increase access to affordable and sustainable energy services and reduce poverty in developing countries.

In Tanzania, the organisation is working in collaboration with REA in supporting six mini-hydropower (MHP) project developers to complete feasibility studies as part of the ESME programme.

The six projects have a combined capacity of approximately 7.5 MW, and are located across Tanzania in the regions of Mbeya, Iringa, Ruvuma, Arusha and Kigoma.

All have undertaken pre-feasibility studies, although some have gone a bit further than others in terms of the quality and quantity of data they have gathered and the steps they have taken to advance the projects’ progress, the statement said.

GVEP International has already invited eligible firms interested in conducting feasibility studies for one or more of the six MHP projects. The deadline for submission of requests will be on next Tuesday.

The proposed scope of work includes site inspection, evaluation of existing suitable energy resource, and review of existing infrastructure and conditions.

The ESME Trust Fund, is financed by the Russian Federation and is administered by the World Bank.

It was established in April 2009 to support energy SME development in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).

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