Grid Densification Challenge Fund
|Partners||Uganda: Rural Electrification Agency (REA), Mozambique: Electricidade de Moçambique (EdM)|
The Government of Uganda puts strong emphasis on extending the national grid; increase in customer connections was not able to grow at the same rate. There is a significant share of people without access to electricity living within sight of power lines. The Ugandan Rural Electrification Agency (REA) has the mandate to facilitate the government's mission to achieve a rural electrification rate of at minimum 22% by the year 2022.
For more information see energypedia.
The rationale of the project is that traditional electrification programmes often focus on grid extension to rural areas, leaving out opportunities for increasing access in already electrified communities. This is especially detriment to poor households as those are the ones more likely to be locked out by high connection costs. However, the potential to connect poor households at relatively low cost is extremely high, as low voltage lines are already available. The Grid Densification Challenge therefore aims exclusively at closing the electricity access gap in already electrified areas targeting poor households not yet connected to the grid. At the same time, the project aims to introduce an innovative element of competition and price finding through a reverse auction mechanism into the sector.
By identifying projects through a competitive call targeting utilities from different countries the project aims to increase the value-for-money in grid densification.
The project intends to launched two calls aimed at national grid densification partners of the EnDev country programmes. The first pilot call in 2016 was only targeted at electrification agencies in Mozambique and Uganda. The second call in 2017 was open to all interested EnDev countries in sub-Sahara Africa. Local EnDev teams support and advised the utilities/REAs in the preparation of the proposals as well as during the implementation.
REA from Uganda emerged as the winner from the first call with the target to connect 13,000 households. In the second call in 2017, EdM from Mozambique successfully participated and is now working towards providing more than 17,200 households with new access to the national grid financed by EnDev in a results-based manner.