Nigeria’s National Agency for Science and Engineering Infrastructure (NASRENI) has started the construction work of the first solar-cell production factory in West Africa. The factory is a part of the Nigerian government’s efforts towards transforming the power sector as well as boosting the local economy.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo recently laid the foundation stone for the establishment of the factory at Gora, Nasarawa state. According to Osinbajo, the landmark achievement of NASENI would place Nigeria within the list of countries pushing their limits in the use of climate-smart renewable energy sources, particularly solar.
The production and research facility of NASENI is being developed in collaboration with the commercial organization China Great Wall Incorporated Corporation (CGWIC). The factory development cost is estimated at around $171 million, with 85% of the funding being provided by the China Africa Development fund through the Bank of China and the rest by Nigeria.
Ten years ago the factory was established as a solar panel production plant with a 7.5 MW capacity and currently has an annual capacity of 21 MW. The new solar cell production & research facility will consist of four major sections, which include a polysilicon unit of 1,000 tons per annum (p.a.), wafers of 50 MW p.a., ingots of 50 MW p.a., and solar cells of 50 MW p.a.