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SOLAR PV CELL MARKET IN NIGERIA: AN INVESTMENT OPPORTUNITY.

The term PV is derived from the Greek/ Latin words Phos and Volt. PV converts sunlight directly into electricity. It is environmental friendly, modular, silent and needs no fuel. Given the increasing concerns on the effects of global warming, PV technology is the preferred option because there are no emissions or pollution, it is clean.

Solar photovoltaic is emerging as a major power source due to its numerous environmental and economic benefits. Installations of PV cells and modules around the world have been growing since 1998 and recorded a tremendous growth till 2009. The annual market has developed from less than 1 GW in 2003 to more than 7.2 GW in 2009 in spite of the difficult financial and economic circumstances. After a 160% CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) growth from 2007 to 2008, the PV market in 2009 continued to grow another 15% in 2009.

There has been a continuous development of PV in established markets (like Germany, US and Japan), an exceptionally good growth in Spain and the emergence of new markets, such as France, the Czech Republic, Portugal and Belgium.

Over the last 5 years, China has emerged as the largest producer of solar cells in the world.

In Nigeria, the level of renewable energy penetration, particularly, solar photovoltaic technology is still at a low level. Receiving on average 300 days of radiant energy, Nigeria is endowed with abundant sun. Nevertheless, about 75% of the over one hundred and forty million people still live without electricity.

PV solutions have the potential to transform lives across Nigeria, where a good portion of the population still relies on petrol and other fuels to light up their homes. Given the persistent supply-demand gap, reliance on captive power generation is likely to continue into the foreseeable future. The enormous investments needed to build the required electricity generation capacity as well as very high transmission and distribution losses on Nigeria’s electricity grid, are factors that makes PV an attractive choice for captive generation as well.

If Nigeria is to attain self sufficiency in power generation and distribution, then the government should grow and expand its role in PV adoption in the energy mix of this country.

Specific drivers for PV in Nigeria include the country’s rapidly rising primary energy and electricity needs, the persistent energy deficit situation, the country’s over dependence on hydro and hydrocarbon for electricity generation. These factors coupled with Nigeria’s endowment with abundant irradiation, with most parts of the country enjoying 300 sunny days a year, makes PV particularly attractive to the country’s energy strategy.

There is enormous potential for off-grid PV deployment, in Nigeria, based on real needs and benefits, in the areas of rural lighting and electrification, for powering irrigation pump sets, back-up power generation for the expanding network of cellular towers across the country, captive power generation, urban applications and highway lighting.

In practical terms one of the ways the technology is been applied in Nigeria is in the installation of an integrated solar powered traffic system and advertising billboard. Solar battery chargers are also in use in the country.

A robust PV industry in Nigeria would create jobs right across the value chain from R&D to manufacturing, installation, maintenance and opportunities for small entrepreneurs.

Should you require our market entry service or business plan on the subject matter, please do contact us through any of the means below.

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