MFK invests in solar panel solutions for 25 women-owned businesses
At least 25 women-owned businesses in Kosovo have started with the installation process of solar panels of various sizes, as beneficiaries of the Women in Energy Entrepreneurs grant program. Up to 250,000$ of grants provided by MFK through this gender inclusion activity will enable women entrepreneurs to invest in their businesses by implementing renewable energy solutions, such as installing solar panels for their businesses. These investments will help them reduce operating costs, improve the energy security and independence, as well as improve air quality in the communities, thus having a direct impact on the environment.
Business landscape in Kosovo relies on coal-produced electricity and oil generators as sources of energy. Since nonrenewable sources of energy contribute to air and water pollution, installing solar systems will not only help cut down costs of operating for these women, but it will also help cut down on pollutants in the environments where these women-owned businesses operate.
For Lumnije Demiri, who received a WEE Advanced Grant, and just had solar panels installed for her restaurant ‘N’Katun’, this investment is a great opportunity for her business to grow. “I am so grateful for the support from MFK and MCC and all their help throughout the entire process. Having the solar panels installed for my business makes everything much easier now. This investment will help me save, and I will use these savings elsewhere; I aspire to expand my business and create more jobs for women in the community.”- Lumnije added.
Other investments through WEE program for over 400-women owned businesses and individual women entrepreneurs, recipients of MFK grants, will include energy-efficient production equipment (machinery, ovens, refrigeration, etc.), heating-ventilation-and-air conditioning (HVAC) equipment, auxiliary equipment (pumps, motors, compressors, etc.), building related energy efficiency measures (insulation, windows), renewable energy solutions (solar water heaters, solar dryers, etc.), as well as equipment used in energy audits and energy assessments.
The Women Energy Entrepreneurs Program is a component of the broader Women in Energy Program supported by the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), aiming to support the growth of women-owned businesses in Kosovo through technical assistance and investment grants in energy efficiency measures.
Millennium Foundation Kosovo is an accountable entity responsible for implementation of the $49 million Threshold agreement, signed by the Republic of Kosovo and MCC in 2017. MFK’s mission statement calls for accelerating Kosovo’s transition to energy independence and good governance. The Kosovo Threshold Program addresses two key constraints to Kosovo’s economic growth: an unreliable supply of electricity; and real and perceived weakness in rule of law, government accountability and transparency.