New Technical Assistance Guide for Renewable Energy Mini-Grids

Highlighting success factors for conducive mini-grid frameworks
© GIZ/Alessandra Agenti/JUMEME

Building on 15 years of support in mini-grid development, GET.transform on behalf of GIZ has developed new guidance on creating effective frameworks for renewable energy mini-grid deployment. The report describes the kind of technical assistance (TA) needed to kickstart a mini-grid market and illustrates essential findings leading the way towards a new understanding of the role and aim of mini-grid technical assistance (TA).

The guide focuses on the transition from mini-grid pilots to mini-grid roll-outs as the ultimate objective. To achieve this, coordination between TA provider and financing institutions must be facilitated from the outset through a range of sectoral adjustments to create the necessary preconditions for tailor-made financing instruments.

With financial sustainability the most challenging aspect of a successful roll-out, mini-grid TA is increasingly tasked with identifying so called Fourth Generation business models which use mini-grids as a starting point to generate additional revenues beyond electricity sales to village customers. Together with new methods of electricity demand projection, this development should help reduce the highest risk for profitability in mini-grids, the demand or volume risk.

The mini-grid TA guide aims to support the cooperation between government, TA providers and development banks as their alignment is critical for the health of renewable energy markets.