We’ve spoken to sixteen movers and shapers involved in off-grid electrification projects in Africa and Asia to gain their perspective on the factors influencing the development of this solution to energy access. Interview participants included developers, technology providers, policy experts and government officials. The interviews covered organisations based in nine countries and with projects spanning a wider number of countries. Their insights were used to inform this report and, where appropriate, we include quotations from them to give a flavour of their perspective.
We use the term ‘off-grid systems’ as a collective term to refer to standalone systems and also to mini-grids that are not connected to a larger centralised grid. ‘Standalone systems’ refer to electrification systems for individual appliances/users that are not connected to any grid outside of the individual user premises. ‘Mini-grids’ are used to refer to small grid systems linking a number of users who are not connected to a larger main power grid. A fuller discussion of terminology is included in a glossary at the end of the report.