The Nigerian government has taken a significant step towards addressing the country’s power challenges by signing a historic memorandum of understanding (M.O.U.) to launch a 1GW Solar PV Manufacturing plant in Nigeria at the COP28 summit.
This move signifies Nigeria’s commitment to a sustainable and self-reliant future and its determination to provide reliable energy for its people. During the summit, Chief Adebayo Adelabu, the Honorable Minister of Power, emphasized the importance of adequate energy supply for a country to unlock its full potential.
He assured the international community that the Nigerian government, led by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu, is fully dedicated to fulfilling its promises. The current power situation in Nigeria is dire, with insufficient transmission infrastructure, limited distribution capacity, and various challenges hindering generation.
These issues result in frequent power outages that negatively impact the daily lives of Nigerian citizens, affecting homes, schools, hospitals, and businesses.
Recognizing the situation’s urgency, Minister Adelabu highlighted that renewable energy is no longer just a future aspiration but a present necessity. Blessed with abundant sunlight, Nigeria has a unique opportunity to become a trailblazer in solar energy innovation.
“The Nigerian power situation is dire – the transmission infrastructure is inadequate to wheel energy generated, the distribution capacity is limited by supply and the needed investment, and numerous problems incapacitate generation.
Adebayo Adelabu, said, “We bear witness to the enormous stress on our national grid that continues to trigger power outages that adversely affect the daily lives of our citizens: homes, schools, hospitals, and businesses of diverse scales.”
According to the power minister, Renewable energy is no longer our future but our present
Furthermore, leveraging the African Free Trade Agreement can position Nigeria as a regional leader in transforming the energy landscape across West Africa and the entire continent.
The launch of the 1GW Solar PV Manufacturing plant holds immense potential to fulfill Nigeria’s promises to the region and contribute to a more sustainable future. This milestone signifies the government’s commitment to creating a better future for Nigerians and future generations, as well as addressing the pressing power challenges faced by the country.
The minister emphasized that the signing of the M.O.U. is just the beginning of the work and that the real test of their commitments lies ahead. Upon returning to their country, they should be proactive, push boundaries, and seek help.
Furthermore, the power minister expressed his confidence in InfraCorp, Solarge, and the African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank’s capabilities to advance the M.O.U. and establish a 1GW Solar P.V. Manufacturing factory shortly. He believes that such initiatives and partnerships, whether local or international, will bring Nigeria closer to becoming a thriving, secure, and energy-independent nation.
The agreement was initiated by Nigeria’s Infrastructure Corporation, (Infracorp) led by Dr. Lazarus Angbazo, the CEO, who signed the contract with two partners, Solarge BV of the Netherlands and the African Green Infrastructure Investment Bank.
According to Mr. Angbazo, the objective is to revolutionize Nigeria’s energy sector and have a positive impact on various sectors of the Nigerian economy.
The goal is to elevate Nigeria’s economy to 1 trillion dollars, and achieving this requires sustainable and climate resilient infrastructure, Dr Angbazo said.
He added that, “the project focuses on local manufacturing, green manufacturing and renewable energy, equipment manufacturing, and climate resilient infrastructure”. The event was attended by other cabinet ministers and senior government officials.
InfraCorp is a government-supported infrastructure investment entity that was established and co-owned by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Africa Finance Corporation (AFC), and Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) (“the Promoters”).
Through Solarge International BV, a leading Dutch manufacturer of lightweight solar panels, an MoU was signed with Infrastructure Corporation of Nigeria (InfraCorp) to establish a solar panel manufacturing factory in Nigeria.
“This initiative significantly contributes to Nigeria’s industrialization drive and aligns with the vision of @officialasiwajubat to promote local manufacturing capacities, create employment opportunities, accelerate electrification, and foster economic growth while also decarbonizing in line with Nigeria’s energy transition commitment.”
The solar PV manufacturing plant will be one of the world’s first large-scale production facilities for lightweight solar panels with an ultra-low carbon footprint. This project will play a crucial role in Nigeria’s commitment to sustainable local manufacturing and the development of critical infrastructure to achieve Net Zero emissions.