Challenges to establishing and sustaining local production of re-newable energy technologies in Sub-Saharan Africa

Ulrich Elmer Hansen, Ivan Nygaard, Elder Davy, Thomas Hebo Larsen, Cyrus Wekesa Wabuge

Research output: Book/ReportReport

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Abstract

Component production in the renewable energy (RE) sector, specifically of solar PV and wind turbine components, has been localised across various countries in Africa as part of the increasing diffusion of these RE technologies over the past decade. Local factories have been established in spite of ever cheaper world market prices for RE technologies, which would appear to favour the importation of components from abroad over local pro-duction. In this report, we address this apparent paradox by analysing the conditions enabling the development of local RE component production facilities in Africa. We adopt a multiple case-study approach focusing on the histories of two solar PV module assembly plants in Kenya and Senegal respectively, which were established around the same time. We find that the solar PV factory established in Kenya managed to maintain its production, while in Senegal the assembly plant only succeeded in doing so for a short period of time. We provide a discussion of some of the possible explanations for the observed differences in these two development paths. The report ends by providing in-sights of relevance to the debate on establishing and sustaining the local manufacture of RE technologies in Africa.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 2019

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