Plug-and-play solar system manufacturer BBOXX’s customers in Togo will start receiving a subsidy from government to spend on solar energy.
This is the first government subsidy for the purpose of solar energy payments in Africa.
Dubbed the CIZO Cheque, households with BBOXX solar home systems will be granted a subsidy of about $4 a month for a three-year period.
BBOXX’s solar home systems are available to customers via mobile money on a pay-as-you-go basis. This subsidy will encourage people to opt for clean solar energy as opposed to kerosene.
BBOXX has been operating in Togo since December 2017, after being awarded a tender to install 300 000 solar home systems by 2022 across the country, largely in rural areas.
Less than a fifth of Togo’s rural population has access to electricity, which is a major stumbling block to economic development. The CIZO Cheque will initially focus on 11 regions in Togo with the lowest electrification rates.
BBOXX cofounder and CEO Mansoor Hamayun commented that this pioneering initiative is a major stride forward in tackling a key obstacle to achieving universal electrification in Africa – this being that many customers are still living in poverty.
“Overcoming energy poverty is the first step in overcoming poverty as a whole – as access to electricity brings people into the digital economy and fosters financial inclusion.
“This innovative solar subsidy is a key component along the path to achieving 100% electrification at scale, and will have a positive knock-on effect to the wider Togolese economy. Access to clean, reliable and affordable electricity has transformational benefits for individuals, communities and small and medium enterprises as electricity provides the basic prerequisite for access to all other modern amenities.”
Togo Energy Minister Marc Ably-Bidamon said access to electricity is a basic need and the government of Togo is committed to achieving 100% access for all by 2030, by ensuring that no one is left behind.
“The CIZO Cheque will provide Togolese rural households access to high-quality solar home systems at an affordable price.”