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PNG Power Partners with IFC to Deliver Energy to Rural, Remote and Outer Centers

Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, August 14, 2018 PNG Power Limited and IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, are joining forces to work to deliver lower cost and more reliable power to remote and outer island centres, not connected to the country’s two main electricity grids.
The move follows the signing of an agreement in Port Moresby between IFC’s Vice President for Asia and the Pacific, Nena Stoiljkovic and PNG Power’s Bruce Corbet, Director, Strategic Planning and Business Development.
Under the agreement, the two organisations will identify ways to stimulate private investment and expertise to boost power generation, including through greater use of renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, biomass and gas.
“By having solar, wind and other renewable sources of energy, we will avoid the vulnerability, expense and environmental cost that comes with diesel shipments and storage,” said PNG Power’s Acting Managing Director, Carolyn Blacklock.  “PNG Power wants to leverage the global expertise of IFC.  We know that other countries have had great success in utilising the private sector to increase the reliability of power generation and we want to tap into that global expertise.”  
“Papua New Guinea has one of the most acute energy access challenges in the world with about seven million people lacking access to the country’s electric power grid,” said Nena Stoiljkovic, the Vice President for East Asia and the Pacific, making her first visit to the country. “IFC wants to work with PNG Power to improve services to the people of Papua New Guinea and support the government’s agenda to be 100 percent renewable by 2050.”
IFC and PNG Power are also working on a pilot rooftop solar PV program for business in the capital Port Moresby, which should begin by the end of December. The move follows consultations with business, with the aim to initially allow about two percent of peak demand for electricity in the capital to be generated by rooftop solar.
PNG Power had requested IFC’s support in the wake of its successful Lighting PNG program, launched in 2013, which has already helped 1.6 million people – or 20 percent of the population – gain access to phone charging and solar lighting for the first time.
Meanwhile an interim IFC study of Papua New Guinea’s renewable energy shows there is considerable potential for greater investment in renewable energy but it has not yet been developed.
With 300 days of sunshine in many parts of the country, the research points to the potential to harness the sunshine to deliver power to people and businesses through solar. As well as solar, one of the largest potential resources for PNG is hydro yet only a little over one-percent of hydro potential is being utilised.
The study says as diesel-based generation is still used in all PNG Power’s main grids and mini-grids, there is also significant scope to use solar photovoltaic or PV to bring down the cost of generation.
In a further bid to promote solar energy in Papua New Guinea, IFC is planning to take a village road show featuring quality solar products and live theatre to the provinces with some of the lowest electricity access in the country.
Using the campaign slogan ‘Gutpla Solar, Gutpla Life’ the roadshow will tour the Highlands and Momase regions with appearances at the Mt Hagen, Goroka and Morobe cultural shows.
IFC’s work in Papua New Guinea is supported by the Australian and New Zealand Governments under the Papua New Guinea Partnership.
Click here to find out more about Lighting PNG.
About PNG Power
PNG Power Limited is a fully integrated power utility responsible for generation, transmission, distribution and retailing of electricity throughout Papua New Guinea and servicing individual electricity consumers.
PNG Power services customers in almost all urban centres throughout the country encompassing industrial, commercial, government and domestic sectors. Where possible, the services extend to rural communities adjacent to these urban centres.
About IFC
IFC - a sister organisation of the World Bank and member of the World Bank Group - is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. We work with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, using our capital, expertise, and influence to create markets and opportunities in the toughest areas of the world. In FY17, we delivered a record $19.3 billion in long-term financing for developing countries, leveraging the power of the private sector to help end poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit www.ifc.org .
Papua New Guinea Partnership
IFC’s work in Papua New Guinea is guided by the Papua New Guinea Partnership. Australia, New Zealand and IFC are working together through the Partnership to stimulate private sector investment and reduce poverty in Papua New Guinea. [IMAGE] C.gif