Feature: Chinese clean energy manufacturers set sights on Kenyan market

  • World
  • Saturday, 23 Sep 2023

NAIROBI, Sept. 22 (Xinhua) -- With his friendly demeanor, William Liu, the sales manager of Huayang New Energy, drew a crowd of visitors to his exhibition stand at the sixth edition of the Kenya International Industrial Expo, held at an upscale shopping mall in the capital of Nairobi, while explaining the features of the solar panels and batteries on display.

More than 20 Chinese manufacturers specializing in green energy technologies were part of this three-day industrial expo, which carried the theme of "Driving Growth in Kenya's Manufacturing Sector through Technology."

Liu said Huayang New Energy, a Chinese manufacturer and distributor of solar equipment, is eager to establish a foothold in the Kenyan market due to the country's commitment to the green energy transition.

"Kenya is a promising market for renewable energy products, and visitors I spoke to were keen to purchase and install the solar equipment we manufacture," Liu said. Furthermore, the company expressed interest in partnering with local distributors to make solar solutions tailored for households and industrial premises more accessible.

Anthony Tonix, an IT professional who engaged Liu, was impressed by the high quality and competitive pricing of the solar panels and charging batteries on offer. Tonix looked forward to procuring solar equipment from Huayang New Energy for his home on the outskirts of Nairobi. He noted that as more Kenyan households and businesses transition to renewable energy to combat the climate crisis, partnerships with Chinese manufacturers of solar panels and wind turbines are crucial.

According to statistics from Kenya's Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority, solar energy comprised 5.53 percent of the 86 percent of electricity generated from renewable sources by 2022. The installed photovoltaic capacity in Kenya has risen to 210 megawatts, up from 170 megawatts in the middle of 2022.

The presence of Chinese manufacturers of solar equipment at the industrial expo reaffirmed the vitality of the green energy market in Kenya. Kevin Wang, the sales manager of Shandong Leodar Photoelectric Equipment Company, expressed his eagerness to expand business in Kenya, where the demand for solar batteries is growing.

"It is my first time visiting Kenya, but I am familiar with the country's progress in renewable energy, which is why we would like to partner with a local distributor to promote our batteries," Wang said. He added that based on his conversations with local visitors during the expo, access to affordable and high-quality batteries will be key to connecting off-grid communities in Kenya.

Kenya has been at the forefront of advancing a green economy, a move that experts have noted will not only generate new drivers for Kenya's development but also contribute to addressing the impact of climate change on vulnerable African nations.

At the Africa Climate Summit held in Nairobi earlier this month, Kenyan President William Ruto urged African governments to increase their investments in green opportunities. He said this would accelerate global decarbonization, fuel sustainable development, drive economic growth, and create millions of jobs.

At the Orema Power Company Limited stall, Jim Weidong, the sales manager, attended to guests interested in a wide range of charging batteries on display. He found his participation at the expo fruitful and anticipated entering the Kenyan market, where demand for charging batteries to power green mobility is expected to rise.

As demand for home-based solar solutions in Kenya surged, Chinese firms were eager to provide supportive infrastructure and know-how.

Kenya remains an attractive destination for Chinese manufacturers of renewable energy equipment due to the favorable business climate and policy support for the green transition, said Gao Wei, the managing director of Afripeak Expo Kenya Limited, the organizer of the industrial expo.

Gao revealed that 26 Chinese firms specializing in solar and wind power equipment, as well as battery chargers for electric vehicles, participated in the expo and were expected to sign deals with local agents and distributors.

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