Robust Quality Assurance for Off-Grid Lighting Appliances wins Financial Institutions’ support

March 23, 2013, New Delhi : Lighting Asia/India recently hosted a workshop for financial institutions “Impact of Quality Assurance on Off-Grid Lighting Appliances”. The aim was to assure bankers of deploying a robust quality assurance framework to ensure that manufacturers they finance produce durable and high quality solar products/ appliances. Once quality is assured, financial institutions would come forward to support solar appliance manufacturers.

The workshop underscored appropriate testing mechanisms for products before they are sold into the wider market, in order to protect the end consumer or lender. Attended by representatives of local financial institutions, participants learnt about the IFC/ World Bank Lighting Global Quality Testing Methodology, the global standard under the IEC (International Electro-technical Committee) for testing solar lighting products. A strong quality assurance program was seen as the way forward.

Discussions at the event helped address financial institutions’ concerns around inconsistent product performances and warranties and their eventual impact on the lenders’ financial portfolio. Poor quality products can adversely affect the loan payments and often impact future demand for similar products.

The need for a diverse offering of quality assured, off-grid lighting products, with multiple price points, aimed at differing usage requirements were also discussed. It sought to highlight the need for stronger communication with field representatives of financial institutions and the importance of building confidence among end consumers.

Future engagements including a potential dialogue to connect solar lighting product manufacturers with financial institutions to build lender confidence is also planned. Localized workshops for training and grassroots events for branch level representatives will also be planned as part of the outreach.
Related Information

Quality Assurance Methodology