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PRESS RELEASE                                                                                           Date: 21st November, 2014

New "resource efficiency project" for Seychelles to be launched

The new resource efficiency project of the Government of Seychelles, United Nations Development Programme and Global Environment Facility (GOS-UNDP-GEF) is to be initiated at an inception workshop that will take place on Monday 24th November, 2014.

The workshop will be held at the Coco D'Or Hotel in Beau Vallon, starting at 8.25 am.

The workshop will involve the participation of various key stakeholders including the Ministry of Environment and Energy, the Seychelles Energy Commission,PUC, other ministries and government agencies, UNDP, the business community. Participants will be given an overview of the project objectives, work plan, budget and outcomes.

This new project, entitled Promotion and Up-scaling of Climate-resilient, Resource-efficient Technologies in a Tropical Island Context (or "Resource Efficiency project"), will focus on promoting and creating an enabling environment for the adoption of energy-efficient (EE) appliances, such as air conditioning units, refrigerators/freezers and washing machines. The project will also look at widespread dissemination of technologies to reduce water use in the domestic sector.

The project aim is to help reduce energy consumption through the increasing the use of EE appliances, especially in view of the continuous rise of electricity costs in Seychelles. The market for energy-efficient appliances is just beginning to develop and it faces many constraints. For instance, the lack of consumer awareness, limited financing mechanisms, and the absence of standards and labelling schemes are all barriers to be addressed by the project in support of developing this emerging market.

The Resource Efficiency project is a four-year project with a grant from the GEF of US$ 1.77 million that will be implemented by the Project Manager, Andrew Jean-Louis and administered by the GOS-UNDP-GEF Programme Coordination Unit (PCU). The project will be implemented by the Seychelles Energy Commission.

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Note for Editors

Promotion and Up-scaling of Climate-resilient, Resource-efficient Technologies in a Tropical Island Context Project (or Resource Efficiency Project)

Seychelles is highly dependent on imported oil to meet its energy needs: 90% of the primary energy supply comes from imported fuel, with imports of fuel for electricity generation alone accounting for 12% of the total Government budget. This heavy reliance on imported fossil fuels places a heavy pressure on the country's foreign exchange reserves, exacerbates state budget deficits, and poses major energy security concerns, both in terms of access to supplies and pricing. A market for energy-efficient appliances is just beginning to develop in the Seychelles, based in large part on the rapidly rising cost of electricity for most consumers. However, this market faces a number of constraints.

Expected Outcomes

The aim of the RE project is to increase market penetration of energy-efficient technologies, practices, products, and materials in the residential market. It consists of the following components:

• Policy strategies and legal framework;

• Strengthening of the support for resource-efficient technologies; and

• Developing financial mechanisms.

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