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Government gets Sh15.5 billion loans from World Bank

Government gets Sh15.5 billion loans from World Bank

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The Government has received a Sh15.5 billion loan from the World Bank to finance electricity connectivity in arid and semi-arid counties. The money will be used to purchase solar-powered mini-grids that will connect 690,000 households to electricity. 

The households are in 14 counties that are classified as arid or semi-arid and are far from the national grid. 

Speaking on Tuesday in Nairobi during a ceremony to announce the partnership, Energy and Petroleum Ministry, Principal Secretary Joseph Njoroge said the money would go a long way in achieving objectives of the Last Mile Connectivity Programme that targets universal access to electricity by 2020. 

“We have identified 14 counties where these solar-powered mini-grids will be installed. We will first begin with Moyale, Garissa and West Pokot counties before going to the others,” said Eng Njoroge. He said so far, 6.2 million households have been connected to the national grid countrywide. 

The PS said in the current financial year, the Government targets to connect a further 1.7 million households. 

“In the 2018-19 year, 1.75 million households have been targeted for connection. While in the 2019-20 year, 2.2 million households could benefit with access to the grid,” said the PS. 

Practice Manager for Energy and Extractives at the WB Sudeshna Banerjee said the bank was also in negotiations with the Government to provide additional finance for water projects as well as initiatives for livestock development in the same arid counties. 

“We have been in partnership with the Kenya Government since 2004 and the relationship has been good. But as we fund these projects, we want to ensure the private sector takes a big part in them,” said Ms Banerjee.

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