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General News of Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Source: GNA

Dutch support solar lanterns project in Ghana

Accra, Sept. 2, GNA - The Dutch Government on Tuesday outlined initiatives to support the development of a sustainable supply chain for solar lanterns in Ghana.

The project dubbed: "The Green Light for Africa Pilot Project- Affordable Lighting for All" is collaboration between Dutch multinational Philips Lighting and some Ghanaian NGOs in promoting a sustainable supply chain of renewable energy-based lighting products for communities that do not have access to electricity. In an interview with the Ghana News Agency in Accra, Mr. Micheal Bierkens, Deputy Head of Mission and Head of Development Cooperation at the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, said the project focussed mainly on rural areas of northern Ghana. He said in fulfilment of the commitment of the Dutch Government to the project, Mr Bert Koenders, Dutch Minister for Development Cooperation, wo uld pay a working visit to some of the project sites from Wednesday. Mr Bierkens said, apart from the northern sector there were also great untapped markets for renewable energy based lighting products in areas in the southern sector, where many households, businesses, schools and clinics did not have access to electricity, which would also be considered in due course.

The Green Light for Africa Pilot Project is a new initiative supporting the introduction of modern lighting products which seeks to ensure that retailers can provide after sales services, receive training on repairs and provide micro-credit for customers. The Philips Lighting says it is committed to developing reliable and affordable products for the rural lighting market in Africa. Sustainable light is key for economic development and the environment and thus for achieving the Millennium Development Goals.

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