LOME — Togolese authorities welcomed the work of Chinese company ZTE Corp in carrying out the country’s solar street lamps project that aims to reduce public lighting bill, energy official told Xinhua on Thursday.
Toga planned to install 13,000 solar street lamps across the country to reduce energy costs. So far about 7,042 lamps have been installed in main cities across Togo.
“The project is part of Togo strategy to enhance renewable energy use and is globally designed to reduce public lighting bills in constituencies,” Abiyou Tcharabalo, energy director at the ministry of energy and mining, told Xinhua.
“Public lighting bills are increasingly higher to the point that local communities no more meet their liabilities,” he said.
The official welcomed the ZTE’s execution of the project, underlying that the work is subcontracted to local enterprises monitored and assisted by engineers of the Chinese company.
“The Chinese company will train local people in maintenance and adjustment system so as to allow know-how transfer and to assure the sustainability of the project,” Tcharabalo said.
According to Qin Wei, chief project manager at ZTE, local communities enjoyed the coming of solar street lamps that are likely to boost local development.
“In some areas, small businesses have emerged at night around solar lampposts, contributing thus to the creation of income generating activities and the enhancement of local welfare,” he said.
Eximbank of China funded the project through $55 million loan that carries a maturity of 25 years and five year period of grace.
The project of Togo is the most important and gained the most significant financing, compared with those executed by ZTE Corp in Benin, Burkina Faso, Niger, Nigeria, Djibouti and Senegal.
ZTE Corporation is a leading telecommunication equipments supplier in China and has about 15 years experience in renewable energy.