The Energy and Environment Partnership Programme with the Mekong Region (EEP Mekong) has been running effectively since December 2009. The programme aims at contributing to improved access to sustainable energy while mitigating global climate change. Within the programme, 39 projects have been supported so far by providing partial grant-based funding to project developers for feasibility studies and pilot and demonstration projects with the intention that the grants catalyze further public and private financing in renewable energy and energy efficiency investments in the region. Total of 32 projects have completed implementation, and seven projects are currently in the final stages of completion and are scheduled to be finished in 2015.
The mid-term review regarded the programme as successful in covering a broad range of renewable energy and energy efficiency initiatives with several pro-poor off-grid interventions. It has also increased interest in private sector delivery of modern energy services, although still to a limited extent.
During the fourth quarter of 2014, the programme started its second four-year phase. Based on lessons learnt so far, the new phase of the programme aims to increase its impact and effectiveness by narrowing its focus on increasing and improving access of rural population to sustainable and affordable energy services and products in the Mekong countries.
The aim is also to increase the climate resilience of local communities through local decentralized renewable energy solutions.
To achieve its objectives the programme will support both piloting and scaling up of district- or village-level energy delivery inclusive business models and renewable energy technologies that meet the needs of end-users and provide sustainable energy services that are affordable, efficient and of good quality.
The first phase of the EEP programme have been supported by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland (MFA) and the Nordic Development Fund, with a total budget of EUR 7,9 million. The new four- year phase is supported by MFA with a budget of about EUR 9.1 million, covering both programme implementation and funds for project grants.
The overall implementation time schedule is divided into three phases: Inception for 6 months, Implementation for 36 months and Phasing out for the last 6 months.