The Ministry of Rural Rehabilitation and Development (MRRD) within the Agriculture and Rural Development (ARD) Sector Strategy, contributes to the reduction of poverty through the establishment of good local governance, access to rural infrastructure, economic regeneration and the provision of a nationwide disaster and emergency preparedness system. Moreover, The National Energy Supply Program (NESP) and the National Water and Natural Resources Development (NWNRD) Program are two of the NPPs that deal with rural energy issues. Energy for Rural Development in Afghanistan (ERDA), focusing on rural energy issues, is included as one of the components of NWNRD – an NPP under the Agriculture and Rural Development (ARD) cluster. This strategy directly contributes to the achievement of Afghanistan’s Sustainable Development Goals (A-SDGs).
The mission of the MRRD is to ensure the social, economic and political well-being of rural society, especially poor and vulnerable people, through the provision of basic services, strengthening local governance and promoting sustainable livelihoods free from a dependency on illicit poppy cultivation.
MRRD accomplishes this mission through donor funded national programs in the areas of governance, infrastructure and economic growth.
Afghanistan Rural Energy Market Transformation Initiative (AREMTI)
The project will contribute significantly to increasing the access to renewable energy, in rural communities in Afghanistan.
The objective of the project is to kick-start rural renewable energy market transformation in Afghanistan and create the conditions for upscaling and long-term sustainability, through a combination of: (1) policy and regulatory design, facilitating public and private sector financing; (2) capacity building and awareness raising of the public and private sectors and end-users; and (3) investment in the set-up of 3 greenfield solar mini-grids and creation of an “upscaling platform” to facilitate additional solar mini-grid investments. The upscaling platform will consist of: (i) a knowledge platform, including a solar mini-grid practical development manual, online evidence and data sharing tools, and full technical studies for 5 additional mini-grids; (ii) development and mainstreaming of green procurement policies for solar mini-grids; and (iii) development and mainstreaming of environmental and social governance (ESG) policies for solar mini-grids.
Ultimately, the project aims to contribute, in a phased approach, to a large volume of solar mini-grid development in Afghanistan and – with the long-term improvement in macroeconomic and security conditions – the eventual involvement of private investment for mini-grid development beyond operation and maintenance only.