The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), as part of its Knowledge Transfer Program, will facilitate the construction of a national market for energy efficiency service companies in Jamaica, based on knowledge and best practices learned during the implementation of a MIF initiative in Chile.
Jamaica has a high dependence on imported oil to meet its energy needs. This is not sustainable in the long run and also represents a major challenge for the competitiveness and profitability of domestic businesses, especially small and medium enterprises (SMEs).
In order to solve this problem, the Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ) has prioritized the creation of a national market for Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) to promote greater investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives. To that end, DBJ seeks to learn from experiences and lessons from other countries that have successfully managed to establish such markets, which could be instrumental in strengthening internal technical capabilities whilst shortening the learning curve.
The MIF Knowledge Transfer Program funds knowledge transfer projects from an executing agency of a MIF project to other entities, designed to replicate and upscale successful experiences by other organizations in the region when implementing projects financed by the MIF. The program was founded from the premise that MIF institutions are repositories of knowledge and best practices in their respective areas with great potential to be shared with other organizations.
DBJ identified Fundación Chile, which between 2006 and 2011 successfully implemented the "Promotion of market opportunities for clean energy" project, supported by the MIF. As a result of this project, a National Association of ESCOs was created in Chile. Moreover, more than 90 Chilean SMEs developed technical skills in clean energy, 15 energy efficiency and clean energy projects were implemented, and a set of technical knowledge products was generated, including 10 case studies.
The Knowledge Transfer Program will provide $ 150,000 in MIF funding to strengthen the technical capabilities of DBJ, which are critical to designing and implementing a program to create a national market for ESCOs, using experience and knowledge generated by Fundación Chile. The knowledge transfer will be based on:
- Translating and updating guidelines and other knowledge products generated by Fundación Chile during their original project.
- Supporting the development of technical and commercial skills at DBJ, the existing and potential ESCOs, and a group of SMEs that demand these services.
- Adjusting the technical proposals to local market conditions, in order to build the capacity of DBJ and others, laying the groundwork for the development of a market for energy efficiency services, and the appropriate financing by DBJ.
To this end, experts from Fundación Chile will visit Jamaica and work with DBJ staff, will develop direct activities with final beneficiaries, and closely monitor the implementation and results of operations.
By leveraging the wealth of lessons learned in the region to facilitate development, MIF honors its commitment to the peoples of Latin America and the Caribbean to use all resources at their disposal to significantly improve their lives.