(Business in Cameroon) - The Cameroonian Minister of Economy, Alamine Ousmane Mey, signed this week a loan agreement with the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank). The deal will see the bank provide CFA35 billion to allow the solar electrification of more than 13,000 households in 200 localities in the country.
The investments are part of the 3rd phase of the project to electrify 1,000 localities with solar energy, launched in 2016 by the Cameroonian government and its Chinese partner, Huawei Technology. The first two phases, which are still being implemented, will electrify 165 and 184 localities in Cameroon, respectively.
However, while it will help increase the rate of rural electrification in Cameroon, which the Rural Electrification Agency (AER) estimates at only 20%, the project will only connect 11% of the country's 9,000 localities still in the dark. According to the Minister of Water and Energy, Gaston Eloundou Essomba, CFA874 billion is needed to electrify all these localities.
The government has set up the Electricity Sector Development Fund to raise the financing. In 2021, Minister Eloundou Essomba revealed the fund had already received an allocation of CFA7 billion.