The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in partnership with the General Directorate for Natural Resources and Energy (DGRNE) of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Natural Resources (MIRN) and the National Designated Authority (NDA) at the Ministry of Planning, Finance and Blue Economy (MPFEA) are implementing the GCF readiness project “Building institutional capacity for a renewable energy and energy efficiency investment programme for São Tomé and Principe”.
The new Clean Energy Mini-Grid Policy Development Guide aims to help policymakers navigate the renewable mini-grid market, providing them with tools and recommendations on how to approach policies and regulations.
The GCF support is closely aligned with the GEF funded UNIDO project “Strategic program to promote renewable energy and energy efficiency investments in the electricity sector of São Tomé and Príncipe”, within which ALER works as a partner.
Both projects include support for renewable energy and energy efficiency policy and regulation, knowledge management, capacity building, as well as investment and business facilitation. The focus of renewables lies on specific regulations and practical documents/procedures, which aim to reduce risks for private participation (e.g. IPPs, PPPs, auto-producers, mini-grids) and project finance (equity, concessional and non-concessional finance), particularly in the area of solar photovoltaics (PV) and run-off-river micro/small hydro power.
As part of the project activities and for application in São Tomé and Príncipe, UNIDO provided support to translate the Clean Energy Mini-Grid Policy Development Guide into Portuguese. It is planned to integrate the model templates regarding mini-grid legislation, licences, concessions, permits, PPAs and minimum quality standards in adapted into the national regulatory framework and proceedings. The translation was also supported by the Global Network of Regional Sustainable Energy Centres (GN-SEC), which plans to organise mini-grid trainings for all lusophone countries under the network.
The Clean Energy Mini-Grid Policy Development Guide was initially developed and published by UNIDO, the Alliance for Rural Electrification (ARE) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) in coordination with other partners in March 2021.