Minister for Power and New and Renewable Energy R K Singh has urged the International Solar Alliance (ISA) to take up more solar energy projects in Africa.
"The economically strong countries will find the renewable energy funds themselves, while the economically weak countries would need green funds. We will have to help such countries who need funds," Singh said during a meeting with Chrysoula Zacharopoulou, French minister of state for development, Francophonie and international partnerships, attached to the minister for Europe and foreign affairs.
India is the president and France is the co-president of the ISA.
The two sides observed that almost half of the African continent does not have access to electricity. Noting that alongside energy transition, the focus has to be also on ensuring energy access as well, Singh highlighted the need to help the ISA forge ahead in this direction sources privy to development said.
They also observed that Africa does not have a problem of decarbonisation as access to electricity is very limited at present and in this scenario, getting access through solar energy is the cheapest and the simplest option, Power Minister said.
Singh also emphasised on the need for green energy insurance, payment security mechanism and debt financing.
"Once established, these funds will grow, due to contributions and interest payments. In India too, our investment is coming because of a fund we set up as a payment security mechanism," the Minister said.
He further said that the ISA should set up a de-risking mechanism and should also tap more green funds and thus promote grid-scale solar energy projects in the African continent.
The two sides also took note of the success of Kenya in renewable energy and discussed the idea of holding a conference by ISA in Kenya.
The minister told the visiting delegation that even though India's per capita emissions are one third of the global average, the country is the fastest in terms of energy transition.
He informed that while 43 per cent of India's capacity today is from non-fossil fuels, it has committed to reducing the emission intensity by 45 per cent by the year 2030.
Singh added that India is going to be a world leader in green hydrogen and that the country is adding renewable energy capacity at a fast pace, which will also help bring down the cost of energy in due time.
The meeting had taken place on June 13.
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