By Kingsley Okoye
Power for All, an international agency canvassing for access to electricity in Nigeria, has advocated the removal of payment of tariff on assured renewable energy technologies’ equipment imported into the country.
The Campaign Director of the agency in Nigeria, Ify Malo, made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Monday
Malo said that free tariff on the renewable equipment imported would facilitate the process of accelerating electricity access in the country via renewable energy.
She said the need to advocate for no tariff on renewable technologies imported was based on the reality that modern renewable energy technologies like “Solar PVs“ were expensive in the renewable market.
She said nonpayment of tariff on the equipment would ultimately help to reduce the cost of the products on purchase by investors, developers and consumers.
She said that replacing all of the kerosene, candles and batteries currently used for off-grid lighting in Nigeria with modern off-grid solar solutions would save over 1.4 billion dollars annually for Nigeria.
Malo said that reductions of prices in the cost of decentralised renewable technologies and appliances such as DC televisions, super-efficient fridges and farm machinery was being done already in East Africa and India.
She said the economies of scale and increased competition in the renewable industry were driving down prices of modern renewable products in other parts of Africa and the world.
She said it was important for the Federal Government to exempt the payment of taxes and tariffs on assured renewable energy products at the nation’s ports.
This would help grow the various renewable markets in the country, she said.
Malo urged governments at all levels to encourage local manufacturers to assemble and produce the renewable energy equipment in Nigeria.
This would help in building skills, transfer technology, drive down costs and ensure job creation for Nigerians in the sector, she tressed.
According to her, “Power for All” is working hard to change the perception of Nigerians on renewable energy and accelerate the adoption of decentralised renewable technologies.
She the agency was working with policy makers, the private sector, investor groups and donor finance organisations to accelerate energy access through renewable energy production.
“We see government and media as strong partners in ramping up the education and awareness for renewable energy technologies and shaping the market for this sub-sector.”
She emphasised the importance of government support to enterprises and organisations to enable them to co finance the sector.
She said it also necessary for the media to tell stories of ordinary households, businesses and communities moving up the energy ladder through decentralised renewable energy systems.