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Need to accelerate achievement of Tunisian Solar Plan

Published the:  07/12/2017

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(TAP) - Many difficulties of financial (access to capital), regulatory and technical nature are delaying the achievement of the Tunisian Solar Plan (PST) set up since 2009 and updated several times, said participants in the conference on "speeding up the implementation of renewable energy projects" organised in Gammarth.

"Despite all the efforts exerted, the pace of implementation of the PST remains short of the ambitions set," said Diego Zorrilla, Resident Co-ordinator of the UN System and UNDP Resident Representative to Tunisia.

 In his remarks at the opening of the conference, the UN official pointed out that beyond the political will displayed by the Tunisian government, the achievement of outlined goals remains inherent to a quick commitment to establish an incentive regulatory framework.

 The latter, added Zorrilla, aims to create the most conducive environment for the development of private investments in renewable energy projects and guarantee their viability.

 In fact, he specified, the participatory approach bringing together the government, the development agencies, the private sector and civil society, is the best indicated because it will identify and propose concrete measures to move to action.

 For Zorrilla, achieving these goals requires rigorous planning of the regulatory framework and technical capacity building, in addition to the establishment of significant funding mechanisms.

  Referring to the same point (financing), Ridha Saidi, Minister to the Prime Minister in charge of Monitoring Public Projects and Programmes, said that the conference will discuss problems related to the constraints and opportunities of financing electricity generation projects by renewable energy.

 In a statement to TAP, he indicated that "this kind of projects requires significant funding involving both Tunisian banks and international donors who attach great importance to renewable energy projects."

"We want to take advantage of the funding lines put in place by international institutions, particularly the European Union and the United Nations," he underlined, adding that priority is to make the programmed projects a reality by solving the problems, particularly those related to the slowness of administrative procedures.

 In the same context, the official reminded that the main objective of the TSP is to increase the share of renewable energy in electricity production from 3% to 30% by 2030.

 The government's willingness to develop renewable energy is again reflected in the 2016/2020 economic and social development plan, which seeks to achieve the 12% goal of integrating renewable energy by 2020.

 The conference which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Youssef Chahed is organised on December 7-8 at the initiative of the Ministry of Energy, Mines and renewable energy, in co-operation with the UNDP.

It brings together about 300 participants from all relevant organisations, institutions, MPs, experts and professionals. Ten government members will chair the various thematic (9) sessions on the agenda of the conference.