Energy Catalyst Round 8 Brokerage Visit to Togo

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Togo is a stable and democratic country with a population of 8 million, 58.8% are rural residents...

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1.1bn people globally have no access to modern energy provision and a further 1bn have only intermittent access. Innovate UK’s Energy Catalyst programme aims to support businesses to develop innovative, sustainable energy technologies and business models to accelerate clean energy transition in developing and emerging economies.

A key focus is to address the clean energy access challenge in Sub-Saharan Africa and South/South East Asia. Energy Catalyst Round 8 will launch in June 2020 and is likely to follow similar scope and eligibility to Round 7 which had an early, mid and late stream. These brokerage visits form part of the collaboration-building to enable businesses to develop equitable partnerships between the UK and overseas organisations.

Energy Catalyst is currently funded by the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) and Department for International Development (DfID) as part of their Transforming Energy Access programme who have invested more than £60m.


The key objectives of the international brokerage trips are to help organisations applying for the Energy Catalyst Round 8 to gain an understanding of the energy access issues in Sub-Saharan Africa and South/South East Asia and find links to potential partners who would be interested in submitting an Energy Catalyst Application.

There are three key parts to the visit:

• Getting Ready: Pre-visit briefing to provide background information on the market and training on how to improve your business and technology pitch for in-country brokering. Hints and tips session on applying to Innovate UK.

• The Visit: Access to NGOs, local businesses, academics and governments who will be able to provide information about local opportunities. They may also become potential partners to apply into Energy Catalyst Round 8.

• Helping you make the best of the opportunity: Enterprise Europe Network (EEN) and Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) support to help you prepare your application.


Togo is a stable and democratic country with a population of 8 million, 58.8% are rural residents. It is a major exporter of phosphates used for fertilisers and imports circa £30M from the UK. With French as the official language, operates on GMT and has similar business and legal systems to the UK, it provides a friendly business environment for UK companies.

Industry provides 33% of the GDP. Economic growth was 4.9% in 2018 due to public investment and growth in services, industrial production, transport and telecommunications. Rural poverty remains widespread, 69% of households live below the poverty line in 2015.


The country has no oil or gas reserves and imports 20% of its current electricity use. Being largely rural it has an under-developed infrastructure and access to power is low. 1 million households are without power, 7% for rural access vs. 87% for urban areas. Access to clean cooking solutions does not reach 7% nationally.

In 2017, the Government “CIZO” scheme aimed to increase rural electrification rates to 40 percent by 2022 by partnering with off-grid companies to offer solar home systems to rural customers. 2018 saw a new electrification strategy aiming for universal access by 2030. Installed Capacity is 230 MW (Thermal 164 MW and Hydro 66 MW). Togo has been developing its regulatory framework for power production and distribution and promoting renewable and off-grid electricity production through its evolving strategy.


To qualify, organisations must be interested in applying for Energy Catalyst Round 8. They must also be working within technology that addresses all three areas of the energy trilemma and aiming to increase energy access in Sub-Saharan Africa or South Asia. They must also be one of the below:

• UK-based micro or SME business (given priority)

• research technology organisation (RTO)

• academic organisation

• charity

• public sector organisation

This programme employs the De Minimis exemption regulation (public support with a €200,000 limit). Eligibility also subject to financial checks.

Companies that have joined previous GCRF visits may only apply if they can demonstrate:

• positive impact of their previous participation in applying for the Energy Catalyst Round 7

•clear additional benefit and impact through the application process

The maximum number of GCRF visits an organisation can attend is 2.


• Pitching to companies and organisations to find potential partners

• Group meetings with key industry players to help understand the energy landscape and energy access issues

• Group site visits and potential linkages to local companies, renewable energy plants and villages that use outstanding renewable energy technologies

• Pre-visit workshop in London, week commencing Monday 1 June, providing market information and pitching training

• Your organisation’s profile in the mission brochure

• In-market help and advice


On acceptance to the visit, a commitment fee of £500+VAT will be taken from you, which will be returned on completion of the visit and feedback form.

Non-attendance after formal acceptance will result in forfeiting the commitment fee.


This visit is part of GCRF. For approved organisations Innovate UK will fund flights, visas, (5 nights) accommodation, in-country transport, and group meals.

GCRF does not cover travel and health insurance for the visit. This must be obtained individually.

Travellers should be up to date with routine vaccination courses and boosters as recommended in the UK including for measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine and diphtheria-tetanus-polio vaccine. Malaria, Dengue fever and other tropical diseases are common in Togo, additionally day-biting mosquitos carry Zika virus. You should take steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. There are occasional outbreaks of cholera. You will need a yellow fever vaccine certificate. Health facilities in Lome are reasonable but are limited in the rest of Togo. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment abroad and repatriation.


It is a competitive process; places are limited, and applications will be evaluated by a panel of experts from the organisers.


For more information on the Energy Catalyst Round 8, please contact: Alice Goodbrook, Innovation Lead – Energy, Innovate UK, T: +44 (0)782 6513 670, E: or Dr Nicola Lazenby, Innovation Lead – Energy, Innovate UK, T: +44 (0)7342 088736, E:

For any additional information related to the visit, please contact: Thierry Delange, 0191 516 4400

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