Lesotho Energy Situation

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29.0000° S, 28.0000° E

Total Area (km²): It includes a country's total area, including areas under inland bodies of water and some coastal waterways.


Population: It is based on the de facto definition of population, which counts all residents regardless of legal status or citizenship--except for refugees not permanently settled in the country of asylum, who are generally considered part of the population of their country of origin.

2,305,825 (2022)

Rural Population (% of total population): It refers to people living in rural areas as defined by national statistical offices. It is calculated as the difference between total population and urban population.

70 (2022)

GDP (current US$): It is the sum of gross value added by all resident producers in the economy plus any product taxes and minus any subsidies not included in the value of the products. It is calculated without making deductions for depreciation of fabricated assets or for depletion and degradation of natural resources.

2,236,502,124 (2022)

GDP Per Capita (current US$): It is gross domestic product divided by midyear population

969.94 (2022)

Access to Electricity (% of population): It is the percentage of population with access to electricity.

50.38 (2021)

Energy Imports Net (% of energy use): It is estimated as energy use less production, both measured in oil equivalents. A negative value indicates that the country is a net exporter. Energy use refers to use of primary energy before transformation to other end-use fuels, which is equal to indigenous production plus imports and stock changes, minus exports and fuels supplied to ships and aircraft engaged in international transport.

no data

Fossil Fuel Energy Consumption (% of total): It comprises coal, oil, petroleum, and natural gas products.

0.00 (2007)

Source: World Bank


The Kingdom of Lesotho is an enclaved, landlocked country in southern Africa completely surrounded by South Africa. It is just over 30,000 km2 (11,583 sq mi) in size and has a population slightly over two million. Maseru is the capital as well as the largest city in Lesotho. [1]

The country has a continental temperate climate that is characterized by very distinguished different four seasons, as the temperature varies from -10 degress in winter to +30 degrees in summer, and receives most of its rainfall between October and April[2].

Fig.1: An Illustration of Lesotho's General Energy Profile (UNEP. 2016)

Most of the electricity produced is based on hydro sources, however the country requires energy imports from neighbouring countries to meet its demand. Lesotho produces about 72 MW from hydropower (Meula). It has about 150 MW peak power and imports more than 70 MW mainly from Mozambique (29% of peak demand) and 20% of its peak demand from South Africa. The electricity supply accounts only for +-50% in the energy mix. The National Policy 2015-2025 is the sector guideline and it envisions the development of the renewable energy sector.

Energy Situation

An Overview of The Main Energy Sources

In addition to the hydropower abdundance in Lesotho, the country also relies heavily on biomass fuels to meet its major rural population basic needs of cooking and heating space[2][3][4]. The country does not have any proven fossil fuels sources, hence it does not produce any crude oil, consequently there is a huge dependency on imported fossil fuels[3][4][5].

The country is renowned for an abundant supply of unspoilt and unexploited water resources, capturing approximately 50% of Southern Africa's total catchment run-off, therefore, hydropower contributes to most of its electricity needs[2][4].

Table.1: Lesotho's Power Sector Main Characteristics
Power Sector
Electrical capacity (2015)[6]
75 MW
Share of Thermal[7]
Share of hydro 99.7%
Electricity access rate (total) 2012[8]
Electricity access rate (rural) 2012 16%

Table.2: Lesotho's Different Energy Sources
Energy Resources
Hydropower (total)[7]
74.8 MW 
Hydropower (small) 0.2 MW
Wind Potential (average) [9]
3.5-25 m/s
Annual average solar radiation per day 5.4 kWh/m²
Coal, known deposits
Electricity imports (2012)[10]
255 GWh

Energy Access

When it comes to energy access, Lesotho is considered one of the lowest in Africa[4]. Though there was a noticeable annual development since the beginning of the 2000s, yet the country has reached its maximum between 2015/16, which when compared to other countries, would still be relatively small[4][11][12].

The major percentage of access is concentrated in urban areas, where the infrastructure for transmission and distribution is considerably well-developed, with rural areas represent approximately 10.2% of the grid-served areas and about 47% of the urban areas have access[4][12]

Fig.2: Lesotho's Total Energy Access (Tracking SDG7, 2018)

Fig.3: Lesotho's Rural & Urban Energy Access (Tracking SDG7, 2018)

Table.3: Lesotho's Population with Access to Electricity & Clean Cooking 1990-2014[11]

Access to Electricity Access to Clean Cooking
Total Urban Rural Total
Year 1990 2000 2010 2012 2014 2014 2014 2000 2010 2012 2014
 % Population - - 19 23 28 62 12 19 28 30 32

Fig.4: Lesotho's Clean Cooking Access (Tracking SDG7, 2018)

Table.4: The Latest General Statistics on Lesotho's Population with Electricity and Clean Cooking Access[12]

Access to
Electricity Clean Cooking
 % Population 30 36


Table.5: Lesotho’s Production of Different Energy Sources during the 2000s[13]

2000 2005 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Charcoal (kt) 78 87 100 102 104 113 124 136
Hydroelectricity (GWh) 288 347 280 520 385 402 420 438
Total Electricity (GWh) 288
385 402 420 438

Fig.5: Lesotho's total energy production (UNEP, 2017)

Installed Capacity

Table.6: Lesotho's Installed Capacity MW[4][14]
Installed Generating Capacity Hydro Capacity Other Renewables Capacity 
75 74.8 .2 (Mainly Solar)


Fig.6: Lesotho's Total Energy Consumption (UNEP 2017)

Table.7: Lesotho's Final Total Consumption of Differenst Sources[13]

2000 2005 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Oil (kt) 42 43 110 116 116 118 123 129
Electricity (GWh) 201 241 332 495 408 432 440 448

Table.8: Lesotho's Industrial Consumption of Different Sources[13]

2000 2005 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Oil (kt) 6 6 13 13 18 23 24 24
Electricity (GWh) 80 96 133 198 163 173 176 179

Tabe.9: Lesotho's Energy Consumption in Transport-Sector[13]

2000 2005 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Oil (kt) 37 37 97 94 88 85 90 96

Import & Export

Table.10: Lesotho's Major Net Imports[13]

2000 2005 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
Oil Products (kt) 70 75 170 176 176 178 180 182
Electricity (GWh) 12 13 215 219 224 245 248 250

Lesotho seeks importing electricity when the national demand exceeds the annual average national production (~72MW), and the imported amount is approximately around 66MW, such electricity deficit is mainly imported from Electricidade de Mocambique (EDM) in Mozambique and Eskom in South Africa, which is within the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP)[4][5][15][16].

Hence the country has no proven fuel resreves of any kind, so there is near to nothing any exports in that sector[13][17][4].

All Lesotho's imported oil prodcuts come from South Africa, with three muli-national companies operating in Lesotho in that field, as they import and store the products in bulk storage facilities before they redistribute them through the country[18].


Table.11: Lesotho's General Electricity Situation[19][20]

Production Consumption Exports Imports Installed Genetaring Capacity From Fossil Fuels From Nuclear Fuels From Hydroelectric Plants From Other Renewables
Capacity  600 million  kWh 763 million kWh 0 205 million kWh 80000 kW 0 0 100% 0
World Ranking 165 163 160 92 184 215 130 1 193

Table.12: Lesotho's Sectorial Electricity Consumption[14]

Industrial  Domestic Commercial General Purposes
 % Consumption 35 31 17 16

Energy Security

Despite the abundancy of hydropower in the country, yet Lesotho is to be considerd far from being energy secure even on the short term.

This state of energy insecurity is a result of many barriers with which the country struggle in general, and the energy sector in particular, and they can be summed in the following[18][11][4]:

  1. The country does not produce any crude oil, or any fossil fuels' products in that matter, which makes it an over-dependent on imported fossil fuels, consequently creating a very vulnerable economy to the continuous changing imported oil prices.
  2. The weakness, and even absence of clear and formidable legal framework, policy and strategy for energy, renewables and energy efficiency.
  3. The inadequacy of the institutional approach in the energy sector in the country.
  4. Lack of incentives and key skills in energy organizations.
  5. Lack of baseline data for carrying a proper analysis of the access situation, modern energy services and productive use of different small-scale energy products.
  6. The unsustainable initiatives by donors and NGOs.
  7. The limited electricity supply, and its incapability to meet growing demand both in domestic and industrial sectros.
  8. The inadequate private investment in energy supplies and technologies for cooking and thermal applications.
  9. The restrictions and limitations of the grid extension and maintenance, especially in rural areas.
  10. The absence of energy efficieny strategies and programms in the country.
  11. The huge dependency on biomass which puts a huge pressure on the bio-fuel sources in the country.
  12. The general state of poverty and low income of the rural population, negatively affecting their ability and willingness to pay for more modernized energy services.
  13. High capital costs of renewables.
  14. Low and limited awareness about renewables.
  15. Low and limited private sector involvement in renewbles' on and off-grid power generation projects.
  16. Low and limited applications of renewables.
  17. Due to lack of data baseline, there is a relative uncetrainty about the hydro, wind, solar and biomass potential in the country.

Renewable Energy

Table.13: Total Renewables' Share in Lesotho's Final Energy Consumption[11]

1990 2010 2012 2014
 % 52.03 53.45 52.32 47.37

Fig.7: Renewables' Share of Lesotho's Total Final Energy Consumption (Tracking SDG7, 2018)

Table.14: Share of Different Renewables' Sources in Lesotho's Final Energy Consumption[11]

Hydro Solid Biofuels Liquid Biofuels Wind Solar Geo-Thermal Other
 % 4.44 47.37  0 0 0 0 0

Fig8: Lesotho's Renewables' Consumption by Source (Tracking SDG7, 2018)

Table.15: Shares of Different Final Uses of Renewables in Lesotho[11]

Electricity Heat Transport
Amount (PetaJoules) 2.47 26.30 0

Fig.9: Renewables' Consumption Depending on End Use in Lesotho (Tracking SDG7, 2018)

Fossil Fuel

The country has no records of any proven fossil-fuels reserves, consequently there is no production value or exporting capacity, and almost all its oil products' consumption comes through importing form South Africa[13][17][4][14][21], as explained in the Import & Export section.

Key Problems of the Energy Sector

Key challenges in the energy sector [9]

  • Very low access to electricity; only 6% of rural households are connected to the national grid.
  • Stagnant generation capacity in the last decade and problems in the maintenance of facilities contrasts with rising demand; 6% annual average for period 2003-2010.
  • Import dependency from Mozambique and South Africa.
  • Weak policy and institutional framework lacking holistic approach and incentives for private sector involvement.
  • Low awareness on renewable energy technologies and limited knowledge of potential resources.

Policy Framework, Laws and Regulations


National Strategic Development Plan 2012/13–2016/17 [22]

The National Strategic Development Plan (NSDP) is a strategy that aims to contribute to the broader National Vision 2020. The document explicitly highlights the fact that there is a potential for energy generation based on renewable sources, provided financial resources are available. The energy sector is regarded as a source of economic growth, climate change mitigation and eventually export revenues. For that the strategy articulates three goals:

  1. Increase clean energy production capacity to attain self-sufficiency, export and have a greener economy.
  2. Expand electricity access to centres of economic activity, other sectors and households.
  3. Increase energy conservation, safety and access to alternative (non-electricity) energy products and efficient technologies.

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Lesotho Energy Policy 2015-2025[23]

The policy document aims to achieve the goals articulated in the NSDP. The policies pivot around principles such as sectoral integration, stakeholder participation, environmental sustainability, gender equity or public private partnerships.

The Energy Policy establishes 15 sub-policies which can be grouped in the following themes and is further disaggregated in general strategies, but no specific activities and monitoring indicators are set:

  • Institutional and regulatory framework and improvement information systems.

- Establish and sustain a platform for energy stakeholder coordination

- Develop standards, codes of practice and specifications for mini and off-grid solutions.

- Impose and collect levies on energy services and products

- Develop a database of local institutions and resources currently available to undertake energy-related research and analysis, and thereafter, assess skills and expertise thereof.

- Establish a support programme for the co-financing of energy research activities.

- Create an enabling environment that encourages investment in the energy sector. This may include facilitating the establishment of international/local and/or public/private partnership and Renewable Energy Feed-In-Tariffs (REFIT) programme.

  • Promotion of bioenergy resources and renewable energy technologies and services.

- Promote research and development in the field of bioenergy and associated technologies for power generation, heat and fuel production
- Facilitate the establishment of Rural Energy Service Companies (RESCOs)

  • Enhancing efficiency of electricity equipment and upgrading and expansion of facilities for power generation, power transmission and distribution.

- Support applied research and development in energy efficiency programmes and activities
- Develop power purchase agreement (PPA) framework that will allow the private sector and cooperative associations to participate as Independent Power Producers (IPPs) in mini or micro hydro, wind, solar and biomass power generation
- Create a conducive environment for local entrepreneur participation in the electricity sector
- Introduce a wholesale tariff regulation that supports increased participation of private sector and cooperative associations in bulk purchasing and retailing of electricity

  • Increase market efficiency, ensuring fair and transparent pricing and promoting private investments with attractive business environment.

- Develop legal, regulatory and institutional frameworks to ensure security of energy supply and increased number of players in the electricity supply industry

  • Ensuring the access and security of electricity and petroleum products.

- Establish price setting mechanisms for recovering the cost of service
Authority (Universal Access Fund) 2011

The purpose of this facility is to channel funds towards the development and expansion of electricity service infrastructure. Furthermore, funding training programmes for communities and research to promote the access to electricity in neglected areas.

Institutional Set up in the Energy Sector

Ministry of Natural Resources or Ministry of Energy, Meteorology and Water Affairs

According to SE4ALL report for Lesotho, The Ministry of Natural Resources through the Department of Energy is responsible for the overall administration and coordination of energy in Lesotho. Other relevant institutions and entities responding to the Department of Energy include the Petroleum Fund (PF), Lesotho Electricity Company (LEC), Lesotho Electricity Authority (LEA), Appropriate Technology Services (ATS), Lesotho Electrification Unit (LEU), National Rural Electrification Fund (NREF) to be established and Lesotho Electricity Generation Authority (LEGA). However, the Energy Policy 2015-2025 does not mention the Ministry of Natural Resources and refers instead to the Ministry of Energy, Meteorology and Water Affairs. This could mean that there has been a change in the names of the Ministries in the recent times.

Institutional Overview of the Energy Sector in Lesotho [9]

Department of Energy

Policy, Plans, Strategy, Programs formulation, enforcement and information dissemination.

Petroleum Fund

Funding viable energy projects and research and development in the petroleum sector

Lesotho Electricity Authority

Electricity Sector Regulation

Lesotho Electricity Generation Authority

Development and management of electricity generation projects to supply Lesotho and the region with electricity

Lesotho Electricity Company

Electricity transmission, distribution and supply in urban and

financially viable areas of the country.

Lesotho Electrification Unit

Build operate and Transfer of electricity transmission,

distribution and supply network and management of NREF

National Rural electrification Fund

Rural electrification –NREF is still at concept level.

Appropriate Technology Services

Technology development


Lesotho Electricity Authority (LEA)[24]

From August, 2004 until April, 2013 the Authority was mandated with regulating the electricity sector. In 2007 the Government decided that the Lesotho Electricity Authority (LEA) should be transformed to be a multi-sector regulatory body assuming additional powers to regulate urban water and sewerage services in the country. LEWA officially started regulating both electricity and urban water and sewerage services sector on May, 2013. The Authority independently deals with matters such as electricity pricing, complaints handling and resolution and the supervision of the implementation of the Quality of Service and Supply standards (QOSSS) by its licensees.

There are other Ministries or agencies with overarching influence over the energy sector: Ministry of Development Planning; Ministry of Finance; Ministry of Mining; Ministry of Public Works and Transport; Water Commission; and Lesotho Revenue Authority.


Public Entities

Lesotho Electricity Corporation (LEC)[25]

Lesotho Electricity Corporation (LEC) generates, transmits, and distributes electricity. The company also owns and operates hydro power stations. LEC is wholly owned by the Government of Lesotho (GoL).

Basotho Enterprises Development Corporation (BEDCO)[26]

The Basotho Enterprises Development Corporation (BEDCO) is a parastatal of the Government of Lesotho. The primary responsibility of the Corporation is the establishment and development of Basotho-owned enterprises. The main focus of BEDCO has been on entrepreneurial capacity building to promote the development of entrepreneurship in Lesotho. BEDCO has formal working relationships with both local and international business support stakeholders.

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Appropriate Technology Section[27]

The  Appropriate Technology  Section  (ATS)  of  the  Ministry of Communication Science and Technology,  an  institution  that  was  mandated  to  undertake  appropriate  technology  research,  the development and application of these technologies, and the dissemination of economically viable results thereof.

Independent Power Producers

Lesotho Highlands Power Project[28]

In November 2011, Lesotho revealed plans for the Lesotho Highlands Power Project, under which a 10 gW renewable energy power-plant will be built. Unnamed Chinese firms will provide loans to finance about 80% of the project which is expected to cost 110 billion ZAR. Equity for the project will come from Breeze Power, a joint venture between the Lesotho government and South Africa's Harrison and White Investments.
Of the 10 gW of power, 6 gW will come from wind energy, and 4 gW will come from pumped-storage hydro power. Construction on the first phase of the project is slated to begin in 2012 with the construction of a 150 mW wind farm. By 2016, 600 mW of the wind capacity is planned to be online. As part of this project, manufacturing facilities will be built in Lesotho and South Africa.

PowerNET Developments (Pty) Ltd[29]

The project involves the development of 42-turbine Letseng wind farm and has been approved by the Lesotho government. Lesotho’s first 25-35MW wind facility will be located near the diamond mine of Letseng La Terai in the highlands of Lesotho. PowerNET Developments (Pty) Ltd is a joint venture between South African energy consultancy NETGroup and Lesotho’s Powerdev Group.

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Private Sector Associations and Civil Society Organisations

The Lesotho Council of Non-Governmental Organisations (LCN)[30]

The Lesotho Council of Non-Governmental Organisations (LCN) is an umbrella organization for NGOs in Lesotho. It was established in May 1990 with an objective of providing supportive services to the NGO Community. The Council implements this through networking and leadership training and development, information dissemination, capacity building, coordination, advocacy and representation when dealing with the government and the international community.

Lesotho Association of Engineers[31]

Among other goals the LAE seeks to foster and promote the art and science of Engineering and its application in Lesotho and to facilitate the exchange of information. For that matter, they will cooperate with educational institutions and public educational authorities for the furtherance of education and training in Engineering Science and Practice.

Lesotho Solar Energy Society [32]

Lesotho Solar Energy Society (LeSES) acts as a platform for the industry and clean energy expert groups to exchange information and implementation of an industry code of practice.

Private Sector Companies [32]


 Product Types

Service Types


AF-Power Lesotho




African Clean Energy

Efficient Cookstove


Plot 24, Ha Thetsane Industrial Park
Maseru 100

Bethel Business and Community Development Centre

Solar energy and education

Energy generation and capacity building

PO Box 53, Mt. Moorosi 750, Lesotho

Facebook: Bethel Business and Community Development Centre

Enex Energy

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Technologies
Automation, Software Engineering


Consttec Construction Premises
Off Nelson Mandela Road, Sebothoane
Hlotse, Leribe, Lesotho.


HPL Consortium



P.o. Box 8913, Maseru 100, Lesotho
Metcash Building, Suit 167
Maseru 100
Khubetsoana Lesotho


Mountain Power




Planet Wind Power Systems




Solar Lights


Social Enterprise

P.O. Box 14008, Maseru 100, Lesotho


Technologies for Economic Development

Decentralized renewable energy production (biogas and solar) and energy saving technologies (stoves), technical training.


Technologies for Economic Development

Polo Ground 49/3

PO BOX 14621

Maseru 100,  LESOTHO


Renewable Energy Training and Education in Lesotho

SESSA – Sustainable Energy Society Southern Africa (SOLTRAIN Project) [33]

SOLTRAIN is a regional project on capacity building and demonstration of solar thermal systems financially supported by the Austrian Development Cooperation. SOLTRAIN started in 2009 in South Africa, Namibia, Mozambique and Zimbabwe. In October 2014 it was launched in Lesotho. The project partner is the Bethel Business and Community Development Centre (BBCDC) in Mt. Moorosi. The project aims to build up training capacities in Lesotho in the field of solar thermal technology. Focused training courses are carried out in co-operation with the partner organization BBCDC, ranging from practical hands-on trainings to a university level course.

Solar Turbine Group (STG) [34]

STG has developed a formalized training program focused on solar energy technologies as part of a UNDP GEF-SGP sponsored program with their partners in Lesotho. The course was first piloted in 2013-2014, training over 25 professionals, instructors, and partner engineers/technicians in classroom, hands-on, workshop, and manufacturing topics related to concentrating solar power (CSP) – a type of solar systems STG has designed and built. The course forms the basis of both a theoretical understanding of how concentrating solar power works and the training for manufacturing of solar systems. As such, STG is working with the National University to build on intense short modules to develop appropriate undergraduate curriculum components, as well as modules for use in the Masters’ program under development for Renewable Energy, also as part of the UNDP GEF-SGP grant program.


Bethel Business and Community Development Center [35]

The Bethel Business and Community Development Center (BBCDC) is a commercial and technical school located in a remote rural district of Lesotho that began operations in 1993 on barren land with institutional support from UNICEF and the local RC Mission Church. The Center provides training in the overall subject of solar energy utilization and sustainable development.


Taung Skills Center [36]

The Center provides courses in carpentry, building, solar energy equipment installation and agriculture.


The Southern African Sustainable Energy Initiative (SASEI), National University of Lesotho [37]

The Initiative is offering a series of free short courses targeted to trainers in the field of sustainable energy at tertiary/institutional level: Energy Economics and Climate Change (course held in April, 2016) [38]; Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency; Bio-Energy; Solar Photovoltaic; Solar Thermal; Wind Energy; Hydropower; Electrical Power Systems; Energy Policy, Regulation and Environment; Energy Economics, Finance and Project Management; Engineering Design for Rural Villages.


SASEI, with the support of the European Commission, is undertaking a project to enhance the institutional, human and systems development capacity of the Consortium of Regional Universities in the area renewable energy and energy efficiency in partnership with the Namibia University of Science and Technology, the National University of Lesotho, University of Botswana, and Hochschule Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences (Germany). The project aims to establish a framework for joint graduate programme on renewable energy and energy efficiency studies, develop joint curriculum of graduate and undergraduate course modules and programmes within energy efficiency and renewable energy, and develop capacity amongst key researchers and trainers through exchange staff.


Energy Research Center (ERC), National University of Lesotho

The ERC is an independent entity in the university managed by the Department of Physics & Electronics (DoPE) and reporting to the Pro Vice-Chancellor. DoPE spearheads the centre with research activities in energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies (solar and wind). The ERC endeavors to conduct studies in energy efficiency and sustainable renewable energy to identify suitable technologies for Lesotho’s needs, develop capacity to assess and implement related projects and promote renewable energy adoption. It includes studies on Solar Energy, Wind Energy, Energy Modelling, Energy Management, Rural ICT Projects. There is on-going curriculum development exercise in the DoPE at NUL to introduce optional renewable energy modules in the existing B.Sc. and B.Eng. programmes and launch a postgraduate degree (B.Sc. (Hons) and/or M.Sc.) in Renewable Energy.


Donor Activities in the Energy Sector [39]




US , African Development Bank, World Bank, Governments of Sweden, Norway, UK, European Commission, SE4All, IRENA, NEPAD

Power Africa

Power Africa’s is a regional project in sub-Saharan Africa which goal is to add more than 30,000 megawatts (MW) of cleaner, more efficient electricity generation capacity and 60 million new home and business connections. Power Africa works under three strategic pillars: (1) generation, (2) connections, and (3) unlocking energy sector. There is no specific information on the activities being carried n in Lesotho.

IRENA, United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA)

Biofuels Programme for Household and Transport Energy Use

The overall objective of this continental project is to build the capacity targeted countries in Africa to promote the production and usage of biofuels in order to achieve sustainable development and poverty reduction. This project is implemented to support the United Nations Sustainable Energy for All (SE4All) initiative and the AUC Bioenergy Framework and Policy Guidelines.

The main activity of the project for all African countries is capacity building workshops as well as regional training on biofuel development. Advisory services are provided according to demand by individual countries. There is no specific information on Lesotho.

Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland (Lead Donor), Austrian Development Agency, UK Department for International Development

EEP Africa - Energy and Environment Partnership

The programme started in 2002 in Central America before its implementation in South-East Asia and Southern and East Africa. The immediate objective of the programme is to contribute to the reduction poverty by promoting inclusive and job-creating green economy and by improving energy security in the Southern and East Africa regions while mitigating global climate change. In Lesotho, there are 2 on-going projects:  1) Biogas for Rural Households and Communities and 2) Feasibility Study for Semonkong Wind Energy Development aimed for installing a wind farm of 15MW installed capacity

UNDP, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF), European Commission (EC)

Regional Energy Project for Poverty Reduction: Enhanced capacities of sub-regional and national institutions to deliver energy services

Pan-African project seeking to provide policy, capacity and technical support to the Regional Economic Commissions (RECs) - and countries with energy access fully integrated into national development plans.  The project also seeks to scale-up successful decentralized energy delivery models, as well to assist countries to develop national energy access programs and viable energy investment projects to expand the delivery of energy services to rural and peri-urban populations. Finally, they seek to establish a South-South knowledge network and systems for sharing of experiences and best practice. No further project information was found online.

Australia, Denmark, Japan, Korea, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK, US.

Strategic Climate Fund - Scaling Up Renewable Energy Program (SREP)

The SREP is a global program providing 72 developing and middle income countries with resources to manage the challenges of climate change and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions.  With regards to energy, the program provides concessional resources to scale up low carbon technologies in renewable energy, energy efficiency, and sustainable transport for increased energy access and economic growth in the world’s poorest countries.

Lesotho needs help from SREP to establish pilot Independent Power Producers (IPPs) from renewable energy sources and distribute electricity to rural areas. A project unit will be established within the Ministry of Energy, Meteorology and Water Affairs to specifically implement the project under SREP. Potential areas of SREP intervention might include on-grid renewable energy technologies (hydro, wind and solar), off-grid renewable energy technology (small hydro, solar photovoltaic and hybrid generation systems), capacity building in both the public and private sector and a funding facility for private sector initiatives such as energy efficient cook stoves and solar home systems.

Canada, Finland, Germany, The Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, United Kingdom, United States, and the World Bank, Shell, Dow Corning Corporation, Deutsche Bank, CEMEx, Johnson & Johnson, and Morgan Stanley, GIZ (not exhaustive).

Global Alliance For Clean Cookstoves

The goal of this global project is to create a thriving global market for clean and efficient household cooking solutions in order to save lives, improve livelihoods, empower women, and protect the environment. The Alliance’s goal is to have 100 million households to adopt clean and efficient cook stoves and fuels by 2020. Lesotho is a country partner which means that the government has ascribed to the principles of the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves, including, a national commitment to support the adoption of clean cookstoves and fuels within their borders; to take a leadership role in employing clean cooking best practices and disseminating clean cookstoves and fuels; and providing in-kind services or funding to the Alliance for the execution of major clean cookstoves and fuels activities. Activities are undertaken in focus partners (Bangladesh, China, Ghana, Guatemala, India, Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda.

European Commission

11th European Development Fund. National Indicative Programme (NIP) 2014-2020

The overall objective for this bilateral cooperation in the energy sector is to provide Lesotho's people and productive sectors with access to a modern, clean, affordable, sustainable and reliable energy supply. The specific objectives leading to this overall goal consistent with the NSDP are: effective and sustainable governance of the energy sector at the national level; a more sustainable and cleaner energy sector providing universal access to modern; affordable and reliable energy with a reduced reliance on biomass.

European Union

Southern African Sustainable Energy Initiative

Regional project focused on developing capacity in the Higher Education Institutions of partner countries for national and regional planning, development and implementation of sustainable energy systems and projects. It is coordinated by the Namibia University of Science and Technology, in partnership with the University of Lesotho, University of Botswana and Hochschule Darmstadt in Germany.

City of Gummersbach, Germany

Development Cooperation Agreement

This bilateral Cooperation Agreement mainly focuses on supporting the Kingdom of Lesotho on the transfer of skills and knowledge, as well as capacity building through apprenticeship training of Basotho in Gummersbach on hospitality and hotel management, metal works, carpentry and electrical works; support to Kindergartens in Lesotho; support in the health sector through the training of nurses and doctors, support and capacity building in the establishment and management of sustainable self-help projects for enhancing household food security and socio-economic development thereby enhancing self - reliance.

Austrian Development Cooperation

Southern African Solar Thermal Training and Demonstration Initiative (SolTrain)

SolTrain is a Regional Project in Southern Africa that assists local institutions in improving the efficiency and quality of their solar systems and in building maintenance capacity. In Lesotho, it is implemented through the vocational school Bethel Business and Community Development Centre. This institution has taken the lead in harnessing solar energy and teaching solar energy utilization as a core curriculum component. BBCDC also operates a full-fledged energy services sales division which includes photovoltaics (PV) and solar water heating along with comprehensive construction solutions.

The overall goal of this project is to contribute to the switch from a fossil fuel based energy supply to a sustainable energy supply system based on renewable energies. This will be achieved by awareness creation and building up training capacities in Lesotho in the field of solar thermal technology and the improvement of the quality, performance and lifetime of solar thermal systems. In addition, the project aims to support the creation of new jobs for small and medium enterprises and is going to initiate and strengthen political support mechanisms for solar thermal systems in Lesotho.


  1. "Lesotho". Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lesotho
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