New Delhi, November 1st 2022: The Sixth Assembly of the International Solar Alliance (ISA) was hosted today in New Delhi and was presided over by Shri Raj Kumar Singh, Minister of Power and New & Renewable Energy, Government of India in his capacity as the President of the ISA Assembly. Ministers from 20 countries and delegates from across 116 Member and Signatory countries participated in the Assembly.
Speaking on the occasion, Shri Raj Kumar Singh said: “Around 80 per cent of the global population resides in countries that depend on fossil fuel imports, totalling a staggering 6 billion people. Renewable energy sources have the potential to supply 65 per cent of the world’s total electricity by 2030 and decarbonise 90 per cent of the power sector by 2050. The International Solar Alliance is steadfast in its commitment to Member Countries to make solar the energy source of choice, foster environments conducive to attracting investments and ensure ample energy availability to meet the surging global demands. Towards this, ISA through its Viability Gap Funding (VGF) mechanism provides a grant of USD 150,000 or 10% of the project cost (whichever is lower), per country per project. The Assembly decided to increase the range to 35% of the project cost, depending on the capacity and needs of the countries and their respective projects.”
The Co-President of the Assembly, H.E. Ms ChrysoulaZacharopoulou, France’s Minister of State for Development, Francophonie and International Partnerships said: “For France, the ISA is a key initiative to promote the development of clean energy and thus combat climate disruptions. It is playing its full part in this great project, with constant and growing support for our Alliance. Through the French Development Agency (AFD), we’ve financed over 1.5 billion euros worth of solar projects since 2016. France is taking action and we are determined to accelerate. Last year, we provided over 7.5 billion euros in climate finance to our partners. These are not mere figures, but concrete projects, such as the construction of the Onigbolo solar power plant in Benin, which we completed this year, bringing 25 megawatts of clean energy to the people of Benin. We also support our partners in formulating and financing their fair energy transition plans. This is the founding principle of all our international partnerships: to be based on national agendas and priorities. The solar revolution must be backed up by a broader strategy of access to energy. I sincerely believe that this Alliance can provide solutions to one of the great challenges of our time, despite the fractures in the world.”
Dr Ajay Mathur, Director General of International Solar Alliance, said: “We urgently need to accelerate the build-up of solar energy, especially in developing countries and in applications that influence the daily lives of those without access to reliable energy – such as getting electricity from solar mini-grids, powering agricultural pumps, running cold storages, etc. Capacity building and regulatory change are necessary enablers towards that. ISA is facilitating over 9.5 GW of solar applications in 55 developing countries, including LDCs and SIDS, and has already provided training to nearly 4,000 people across the developing world on ways to make a living out of supporting solar energy. We are working on developing STAR Centres in countries which will be a hub of technology, knowledge, and expertise on solar energy. In addition, ISA is enabling solar mini-grids to provide universal energy access, especially where grid extension is too expensive. Guarantees help in crowding in private sector investment, and ISA has developed such a mechanism to provide guarantees through its Global Solar Facility to its member countries in Africa. We are also enabling entrepreneurs in these countries who can, with help, become major suppliers of solar energy across countries and regions.”
In May 2020, ISA initiated Demonstration Projects to meet the needs of LDCs and SIDS. The aim was to exhibit solar technology applications, which can be scaled up, and build the capacity of beneficiary member countries. Four projects set up with ISA’s assistance were inaugurated by Shri RK Singh These projects include:
- i. Solarisation of the parliament building of the Republic of Malawi
- ii. the solarisation of two rural health care centres in the Republic of Fiji, with an 8-kW solar PV system & 20-kWh battery storage capacity for each health centre
- iii. Installation of 1 solar-powered cold storage of capacity 5 MT for the benefit of its agricultural stakeholders at La Digue Island, Republic of Seychelles
- iv. Solarisation of the Nawai Junior Secondary School (JSS) in the Republic of Kiribati, with a 7kW Solar PV rooftop system paired with a 24-kWh BSS
Shri Singh said“It is my honour and privilege to dedicate four projects to the Republic of Malawi, the Republic of Fiji, the Republic of Seychelles and the Republic of Kiribati, each of USD USD 50,000 (Fifty thousand) provided by the ISA under the ISA grant initiative. The ISA recognises the achievements of our Member countries and applauds their efforts in advancing the cause of energy transition through solar. We as a collective must learn from one another’s successes and challenges.”
The Assembly is the apex decision-making body of ISA, in which each Member Country is represented. This body makes decisions concerning the implementation of the ISA’s Framework Agreement and coordinated actions to be taken to achieve its objective. The Assembly meets annually at the ministerial level at the ISA’s seat. It assesses the aggregate effect of the programmes and other activities in terms of deployment of solar energy, performance, reliability, cost, and scale of finance. The Sixth Assembly of the ISA is deliberating on the key initiatives of ISA on three critical issues energy access, energy security, and energy transition.