Togo has inaugurated the Blitta photovoltaic plant (267 kilometres north of Lomé), the largest one of its kind in West Africa.It is the result of a partnership with the United Arab Emirates-based multinational AMEA Power.
The solar power plant, named after the Emirati crown prince, Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed, is capable of generating 90,255 MWh of energy per year.
It will therefore be able to provide “clean and renewable energy” to 158,333 households.
In addition, the solar power plant is expected to help in reducing Togo’s carbon footprint by avoiding the emission of “more than one million tonnes of carbon dioxide CO2 over its lifetime.”
Head of state, Faure Gnassingbe, inaugurated the infrastructure as part of a programme to provide “universal access to electricity” by 2030.
The Togolese president was particularly pleased with the construction of the power station “in record time” with “80 percent local labor force.”
Faure Gnassingbe also stressed that this is “the consecration of the first large-scale renewable energy project” in his country, before wishing that other initiatives of this kind would have the same “speed” in their implementation.
Eighteen months have passed between the signing of the power purchase agreement and the start of commercial operation of the solar plant.
The project was funded by concessional loans from the West African Development Bank (BOAD) and the Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (ADFD).
In his speech, Hussain Al Nowais, Chairman of AMEA Power, said that “Togo was the obvious choice to launch our first operational power plant in Africa. Not only is it a major commercial hub in West Africa, but also a progressive regulatory framework established by the government for renewable energy projects.”