South Sudan powers up with $20 million in solar for telecom towers.

By Oliver Townsend Jul 10, 2024
South Sudan solarizes telecom towers with USD 20 million.jpegOrginal image from:

South Sudan has secured a significant investment of $20 million for the solarization of its telecom towers, a project aimed at enhancing connectivity and reducing operational costs in the telecom sector. The Energy Inclusion Facility (EIF) and the Finnish Industrial Cooperation Fund (Finnfund) have granted this funding to asset manager Communication & Renewable Energy Infrastructure (CREI) to finance the solarization of telecommunications infrastructure in Southern Sudan.

Strategic Financing for Telecommunications

The financing for Communication & Renewable Energy Infrastructure (CREI) includes a $15 million bridging loan from the African Development Bank’s (AfDB) Energy Inclusion Facility (EIF) and a $5 million mezzanine loan from the Finnish Industrial Cooperation Fund (Finnfund). This financial support will enable CREI to develop, build, and operate renewable energy facilities for a telecommunications player in Southern Sudan. According to Valtter Louhivuori, head of Finnfund’s Nairobi office, this investment aligns with their digitalization and climate action objectives, recognizing the role of improved mobile connectivity in driving economic growth.

Impact on the Telecommunications Sector

The implementation of hybrid energy solutions through this funding represents a technological advancement for the telecommunications sector in Southern Sudan. By increasing solar energy production and reducing diesel usage, the project aims to decrease the operating costs of telecommunications infrastructure. This transition to sustainable energy solutions not only promotes economic stability but also facilitates better mobile connectivity, efficient access to basic services, and stimulates local and regional economic opportunities.

Market Outlook

With this substantial funding, South Sudan is establishing itself as a pioneer in the adoption of renewable energy solutions for critical infrastructure. The success of this project could set a precedent for other countries in the region, showcasing the economic advantages of an integrated approach to energy and telecommunications.

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