Supporting the scale-up of energy access in six Sub-Saharan African countries


The Beyond the Grid Fund for Africa (BGFA) programme, a multi-donor results-based financing programme aims to build markets for off-grid energy to bring access to clean, affordable off-grid energy to reach at least 6 million people by 2025. NIRAS joins the next phase as project implementation kicks off Burkina Faso, Liberia and Zambia.

June 14, 2022
  • SDG: #1, #7, #8, #9, #10
  • SECTORS: Development Consulting, Energy
  • COUNTRIES: Burkina Faso, Congo, Liberia, Mozambique, Zambia and Uganda

“We are very happy to announce that we have signed a framework agreement with the international consultancy company NIRAS to establish a local footprint supporting the implementation of the BGFA programme together with our long-standing partner REEEP. We are really excited to move into the next phase of the programme and, with support from our two project implementation partners, monitor and assist the progress of our financed projects in all BGFA countries.” 

Ash Sharma, Head of BGFA and Vice President of Green Transition Special Funds at NEFCO

Launched in 2020 and managed by the Nordic Environment Finance Corporation (NEFCO), the Beyond the Grid Fund for Africa (BFGA) Facility has been going from strength to strength. In partnership with the international Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), BFGA's first funding rounds were opened in Burkina Faso, Liberia and Zambia. Subsequent funding rounds were launched in Mozambique and Uganda in 2021 and a fourth is expected in mid 2022 in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The first contracts under the Facility were signed in spring 2022 in Burkina Faso, Liberia and Zambia and will support the establishment of over half a million off-grid energy connections. As these projects are now starting their implementation and reporting on achieved project milestones, including established energy service subscriptions, it is crucial to bring the programme closer to the supported projects in the BGFA programme countries and their clean off-grid energy markets.

"It has been great to see how BGFA has scaled-up over the last couple of years, and REEEP looks forward to continuing its work with NEFCO and now also alongside NIRAS to support the deployment of modern sustainable energy connections across our five active countries and to help expand the programme’s impact into new markets as well," said Peter Storey, Team Leader at REEEP.

Well over 1 million

energy connections by 2028

More than 6 million

people will benefit from greater energy access

The current €107.6 million BGFA programme was established through Sida. It has since been developed by NEFCO into a multi-donor programme. Denmark, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, joined BGFA in 2020 and supports the programme in Uganda. Power Africa, a USAID initiative, provides in-kind technical assistance over three years to help operationalise the initiative and develop a pipeline of commercially viable projects within the framework of BGFA. Germany, through KfW Development Bank joined the BGFA country programme for Zambia with a focus on mini-grids.

NEFCO and REEEP teamed up with NIRAS to strengthen its local capacity and presence in all the project countries. The assignment consists of support for independent local monitoring of the contracted companies - the energy service providers. As part of the on-the-ground monitoring, reporting and verification services, NIRAS will monitor the contracted energy service providers, review implementation progress and milestones reached by the financed projects, support and coordinate work related to impact evaluations and verification of established energy service subscriptions and provide institutional support in the BGFA countries. 

“NIRAS is excited to have the opportunity to collaborate with NEFCO and REEEP. We will form a proactive and highly competent monitoring, reporting and verification unit to ensure value for money is ensured, while supporting BGFA awardees to implement their projects successfully in each of the project countries. NIRAS has a solid understanding of the off-grid sector needs and technical systems, which will help facilitate a speedy and efficient analysis of the projects’ progress. This way we can support the efforts towards considerable growth of the off-grid sector across the region”, says Sven Vejen Hindkjær, Director, NIRAS International Consulting Denmark.

For more details on BGFA, please visit the project website at

Annegrete Lade Lausten

Annegrete Lade Lausten

Senior Consultant

Aarhus, Denmark

+45 6040 5651