In response to the identified shortage of qualified solar PV installers and maintenance technicians in West Africa the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA) and ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE) with support from other partners incl. GIZ have been working together to establish a regional certification scheme for installers of solar PV systems.

During the first phase, this scheme will focus on installers of simple off-grid systems, but it is planned that the scheme will gradually also cover other groups such as installers of more complex off-grid and on-grid PV systems. A Job Task Analysis (JTA) for phase one has been developed and presented at regional workshops held in Ouagadougou and Accra. Following these workshops, a remote review process of the JTA has been undertaken in all 15 ECOWAS member states and ECREEE has expressed its willingness to serve as or host the Regional Certification Body (RCB).

In this sense ECREEE, IRENA and GIZ with funding from the Renewable Energy Cooperation Programme (RECP) of the EUEI Partnership Dialogue Facility (EUEI PDF), the Austrian Development Agency (ADA), LuxDevelopment and the German Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) are organizing  a technical workshop in Praia, Cabo Verde, from 14-15 December 2015 at CERMI Center, that will be the first occasion for representatives of all ECOWAS member states to discuss about the regional certification scheme and to validate the JTA for off-grid solar PV installers and establish the structure of the regional certification scheme.

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