Earlier this month the World Bank approved $172 million in funding to install solar power systems in Bangladesh. The money will finance 630,000 solar home systems and other renewable energy mini-grids in the country as part of the Rural Electrification and Renewable Energy Development Project (RERED), which was created in 2002 to increase access to electricity in poor and rural areas. A similar credit was issued in 2009, and since December of that year over 300,000 solar home systems have been installed.
According to the World Bank press release, only around 30 percent rural households in Bangladesh currently have access to electricity, leaving around 16 million households without. In order to promote both economic and social development in the country, the project aims to change those numbers. "40,000 rural families install solar home system every month on average, a rate way beyond our original expectations,” said World Bank employee Zubair Sadeque, a Team Leader for RERED.
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