“Pay as you go” solar power systems are cropping up across Sub-Saharan Africa, bringing affordable, reliable, emissions-free electricity to rural communities and creating new business opportunities and employment while at the same time addressing pressing environmental challenges. Capitalizing on the popularity of mobile phones and tapping into funding and support from multilateral development programs, as well as from early-stage, venture capital (VC) investment groups, pioneering solar “pay as you go” systems developers are looking to expand.
Their success in Africa begs the question of whether or not mobile “pay as you go” solar energy systems can be successful in other parts of the world, such as Asia. China, for instance, has the world’s largest installed base of solar PV cell and module manufacturing capacity. The central government has set ambitious solar and renewable energy targets in a bid to boost economic growth and create jobs, as well as reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and environmental degradation.