A new financing programme supporting access to and scale-up of higher tier clean cooking solutions in six Sub-Saharan African countries is about to be launched. Zimbabwe is the latest country to join the programme and, together with the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Mozambique, Tanzania and Zambia, it will form one of the country programmes in the upcoming Call for Proposals to be launched on April 20, 2022.
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With an estimated four billion people currently lacking access to sustainable and affordable cooking equipment, the lack of clean cooking solutions is a global challenge.
Of these, almost 900 million people live in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Recent studies by actors in the clean cooking field conclude that this is the only region in the world where the development and access to modern cooking solutions have not kept pace with population growth.
New financing programme
Zimbabwe is the latest country to join a new programme financing programme called Modern Cooking Facility for Africa (MCFA) first announced in November 2021.
MCFA is supporting access to and scale-up of higher tier clean cooking solutions in six Sub-Saharan African countries.
The Embassy of Sweden in Zimbabwe is thrilled to be a part of the Modern Cooking Facility for Africa programme. Zimbabwe needs to take advantage of the fast-advancing modern cooking solutions available and in doing so move away from women spending hours collecting firewood each day, burning wood and charcoal inefficiently for cooking and the health risks associated with burns and poor air quality, said Åsa Pehrson, Swedish Ambassador to Zimbabwe.
An estimated 69 percent of households in Zimbabwe still use wood fuel and charcoal for cooking.
The MCFA programme will address issues of environmental degradation, deforestation and gender inequality, which are all important areas of our work in Zimbabwe, Ambassador Pehrson said.
Enable higher tier clean cooking solutions
In Zimbabwe, the MCFA programme aims to enable the distribution of 60 000-120 000 higher tier cookstoves, providing some 200 000-500 000 people in the country with clean cooking solutions.
At the same time, the programme aims to support local companies working in the sustainable energy and clean cooking sector in Zimbabwe and encourage the entry of new private companies to supplement the companies already operating in the country.
Offer results-based financing
The goal of the MCFA programme is to provide over 3 million people in Africa with access to clean cooking solutions by offering results-based financing for clean cooking companies to grow and scale up their businesses in the project countries.
This will support the development and accelerate the creation of new markets for the clean cooking sector in the MCFA project countries.
Sweden, the initiator and first donor to the programme through the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), will support the Zimbabwe country programme with SEK 50 million (~ EUR 4.8 million), which increases its total contribution to SEK 325 million (~ EUR 32.6 million).
The goal is to develop the Modern Cooking Facility for Africa into a EUR 45 million programme with Nefco – the Nordic Green Bank as facility manager. The programme will be implemented by the end of 2027.
The MCFA programme supports a broad range of cooking technologies using sustainable fuels. By increasing access to higher tier cooking equipment, the programme will contribute to decreasing greenhouse gas emissions and deforestation, improve people’s health and support entrepreneurship and gender equality in the local communities, commented Ash Sharma, Head of the Modern Cooking Facility for Africa at Nefco.
The first MCFA funding round will be launched on April 20, 2022, and will consist of two phases. Interested applicants need to submit their applications through an online system during the first Pre-Qualification phase.
Selected and contracted Cooking Service Providers will receive financial support based on agreed and reached milestones.