Responsible Finance
Published on 02/05/2023

Committing ourselves to energy inclusion in Madagascar


Make clean and affordable energy available to Madagascar’s inhabitants and companies, create new jobs and stimulate the country’s economic development… A group of economic players, including Societe Generale, is striving to support Madagascar’s sustainable economic development. An ambitious operation has thus enabled the Ambatolampy solar photovoltaic power plant’s capacity to be doubled.

In Madagascar, just 15% of the population has access to electricity, with a substantial disparity between urban areas (79%) and rural areas (8%). According to the World Bank, this is one of the lowest average rates in the world. In recent years, an ambitious programme to mobilise funds in local currency from commercial banks for public utility solar energy projects has emerged.

Among these projects, the refinancing – in two stages – of the NEA Ambatolampy solar power plant is one of the most emblematic. The plant currently has a capacity of 40 MWh and a 5 MWh battery-storage system, making it the largest solar power station in the Indian Ocean. These new production capacities will improve electricity access for around 285,000 people, in line with United Nations SDG 7, but will also help reduce CO2 emissions by almost 34,000 tonnes, thus addressing SDG 13. 

The second phase of the refinancing was undertaken through the joint efforts of several players. NEA (New Energy Africa), part of the AXIAN group specialising in renewable and hybrid energy in Africa; GreenYellow, the Indian Ocean’s leading solar PV production player; Societe Generale, which acted as the global coordinator and main financial backer; GuarantCo, part of the Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG); and the African Guarantee Fund (AGF). 

Societe Generale played a key role in implementing this flagship transaction adapted to local constraints. This innovative financing is part of the Grow with Africa initiative launched by Societe Generale six years ago; it illustrates the major role played by the Group in supporting sustainable economic development in Africa.