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UK Sign-up To International Solar Alliance

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STA Chief Executive Chris Hewett and over a dozen members of the STA will join Upendra Tripathy, Director of the International Solar Alliance (ISA), and DfiD Secretary of State Penny Mordaunt at the London Stock Exchange later as the UK formally signs up to the International Solar Alliance.

The event will highlight opportunities for the UK to collaborate with the ISA on areas such as green finance, solar project development and solar research. The high-profile ISA initiative, launched by Indian PM Narendra Modi at the 2015 UN Paris Climate Conference, aims to accelerate take-up of solar power globally with a target of reaching 1000GW of solar power capacity by 2030.

Chris Hewett, speaking at the event, will say;

"The UK solar industry has exceptional experience developing high quality, cost-effective solar projects, and on a large scale. Our members are delighted by the ambitions of the International Solar Alliance which are in step with the challenges presented by climate change and which demonstrate the global importance of solar technology. Having the ISA standing behind projects, including billions of pounds of investment in Africa, will give developers confidence to accelerate deployment in the places that most need solar power."

Frans Van Den Heuvel, CEO of British solar giant Solarcentury, which now operates in more than a dozen countries around the world including across Latin America and Africa, and who is attending the event, said;

"We are very pleased to see the UK sign up to the International Solar Alliance. It becomes clearer every year just how substantial a role solar and associated technologies will play in building a low-carbon global energy system fit for this century. Solar continues to set records for low costs and speed of deployment, and across Solarcentury's global business we see many of our most ground-breaking projects in emerging markets. We look forward to working with ISA to unlock further investment in these regions, and to help roll out solar capacity with the urgency that climate change demands".

The UK finance industry has significant expertise in supporting solar development and enabling project cost savings. The important role of investors in the ISA initiative will be highlighted in the paper launched at the event on Financing the Green Revolution.

Francesco Girardi, a Senior Director of solar investors Bluefield LLP, also attending the event said;

"The solar industry is quite a new market but has experienced huge growth in the last two decades. This has contributed to a build-up in competences, skills and expertise in Britain and Europe, acting as a seeding market for expanding solar PV installations worldwide. Investors, developers, advisers, and lenders have played a key role in enabling this success and I very much welcome the ISA initiative which will be a key enabler of future expansion and growth, providing the right framework to make progress on the renewable energy transition."

The DfID organised event will hear from speakers including the Shell Foundation, KPMG and the Indian High Commissioner to the UK. A networking reception will follow enabling the UK solar and finance industry to meet directly with staff of the International Solar Alliance as well as stakeholders in development and research.

DfiD Dr Simon Lucas said; "˜The UK is joining ISA today because of its potential to deliver clean, affordable, energy for the 1.1 billion people who currently lack it. The event today will showcase the huge range of world class UK expertise that ISA can draw on to raise the finance, develop the new technologies and deliver the viable projects required to accelerate the deployment of solar energy in ISA countries.'

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