There are an estimated 201 million people in Nigeria out of which about 77 million are currently without access to reliable power, making the country one of the largest potential markets for stand-alone solar (SAS) globally. There is market potential also amongst grid-connected customers as only 25 per cent of them receive up to four hours of daily power. By 2040, the Nigerian government aims to achieve 100 per cent rural electrification with a target of 5 per cent coming from SAS solutions.
The SAS sector has witnessed significant growth, fueled by increased donor, government, and private sector investment. Most recently, the Nigerian government launched a plan to deploy 5 million solar connections via solar home system (SHS) and mini-grids by 2023. About 324,000 quality verified SAS units were sold in 2019, up from negligible sales five years earlier ranking Nigeria as the fifth largest market globally by sales volume. The SAS market opportunity is estimated at USD 9.2 billion per year, with the sector attracting USD 227 million investment from 2015 to date.2 There have been trends in product diversification and innovation across solar system size, productive use of energy (PUE) technologies and in the rising adoption of pay-as-you-go (PAYG) models. Market growth notwithstanding, some supply, demand, finance, technical capacity, and regulatory barriers still exist that inhibit the scaling of the SAS market.