Sunday, September 20, 2020

Local Banks not keen on financing clean energy

Financial institutions in Botswana are not sufficiently investing in renewable energy which remains untapped despite opportunities that exist according to the University of Botswana Okavango Research Centre.

The ORC is in support of International Finance Corporation a member of the World Bank research paper which argues that there is a significant opportunity for financial institutions to provide innovative financing products for energy efficiency upgrades, renewable power generation, green buildings, green transport, and climate-smart agriculture and architecture.

In a paper titled “HOW BANKS CAN SEIZE OPPORTUNITIES IN CLIMATE AND GREEN INVESTMENT” the bank emphasised that the transition to low-carbon economies present enormous opportunities for the financial sector.

ORC, Director Professor Joseph Mbaiwa singled out the tourism industry as one of the industry that has already shown commitment in investing in renewable energy.

According to Mbaiwa the investment also presents an opportunity for financial institutions to tap on those opportunities by funding clean energy.

Mbaiwa indicated that a study that was carried by ORC clearly shows that the tourism industry is far when it comes to using renewable energy since most of the camps in the delta are using renewable energy.

He explained that there are lot of opportunities that local financial institutions could be taking advantage of the era presented by the developments.

 According to Mbaiwa the local banks are not taking advantage possibly under the impression that it is government prerogative.  

He is of the view that the government on the other hand want to monopolise the generation of electricity.

 “In other countries individuals generate electricity where the government in turn buy the electricity from certain individuals. This could provide opportunity for individuals who can access finance from local banks” added Mbaiwa.

Mbaiwa indicated that it is imperative for government to offer subsidy which could attract more people to invest in renewable energy.

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Sunday Standard September 20 – 26

Digital copy of Sunday Standard issue of September 20 - 26, 2020.