3 Apr 2013

Digicel and IFC to build cell phone solar charging stations in remote PNG

2:47 pm on 3 April 2013

The mobile phone company Digicel in Papua New Guinea says it is happy to help provide solar charging stations that will be life changing for remote communities, businesses and farmers.

Digicel PNG's head of sales and distribution, Michael Townsley, says they have sourced a vendor who will make the solar chargers that will allow people to charge mobile phones and other electrical devices, as well as provide street lighting.

Local entrepreneurs will be given a licence to run these stations where they will be able to charge up to 20 phones at a time, for a small fee.

Mr Townsley says they will start with a 30 site trial in one area to ensure things run smoothly, before rolling it out across 500 sites nationwide.

"This is a first for PNG I believe. I know there are many different types of individual solar charging units available where you can just buy hand held ones but this is the first, I believe, of this sort of scale."

Digicel PNG's Michael Townsley

The World Bank Group's International Finance Corporation is to work with Digicel on the project.