Afghan Government and international donors meet to promote renewable energies
Around 30 representatives from the Afghan Government and the donors met to review the achievements the renewable energy sector had reached in Afghanistan in the past year. Opening the meeting, H.E. Ghulam Faroq Qazizada, Deputy Minister of Energy and Water said, “The world is moving towards renewable energy and we want to move along. Last year we were able to develop a huge quantity of renewable energy projects, let’s continue to do so.” The donor committee meeting was arranged and coordinated with support from the Afghan-German Cooperation programme. Speaking about Germany’s contribution to the renewable energy sector in Afghanistan, H.E. Tariq Esmati, Deputy Minister of Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development, added, “Germany has been very kind. We hope other donors can follow suit.”
For the coming year, the Afghan Government and international donor community agreed to keep working together on providing electricity based on renewable energies for Afghanistan. Participants agreed on an action plan of priority measures, which include further coverage and regulation of the sector to meet rural demands for energy provision. Furthermore, the meeting discussed progress of a vocational training programme for solar energy technicians at the Vocational Training Center of the Ministry of Energy and Water (MEW). The centre receives both financial and technical assistance from the German Government, and the curriculum for the solar energy course is in the final stages of development.
The renewable energy sector in Afghanistan is experiencing rapid growth. Several new renewable energy schemes were installed in the past 12 months, and regulation of the sector has moved forward. A new policy for renewable energies in rural areas is in its final stages, technical guidelines are available for various technologies, including solar PV power or hydro-electric power, and there are planning frameworks for the national and provincial levels for electrifying rural areas with the aid of renewable energies.
As part of Germany’s cooperation with Afghanistan, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH has been helping the Ministry of Energy and Water and the Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development (MRRD) to coordinate meetings between government institutions and donors in the renewable energy sector in Afghanistan. Financed by the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), GIZ provides policy advisory services and technical support for the ministry’s institutional and organizational development.