Papua New Guinea Adopts IEC Quality Standards for Solar Energy Kits
In April 2023, Papua New Guinea took an important step towards improving energy access by adopting internationally harmonised standards for solar energy kits with power ratings up to 350 watts. Papua New Guinea (PNG) has a growing market for off-grid solar products for which the government is pursuing mechanisms to promote quality and improve consumer protection. VeraSol, with support from the World Bank Group, has responded by providing technical assistance to PNG. Through participation in the national technical committee for renewable energy, VeraSol worked closely with the National Institute of Standards and Industrial Technology (NISIT) and other key stakeholders to facilitate the adoption of the national quality standards for solar energy kits. VeraSol’s team of experts continues to support the government of PNG as the country prepares to use the newly adopted standards to bolster a sustainable market for off-grid solar.
Quality standard and test methods for solar energy kits
The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) quality standard and test methods for solar energy kits up to 350 watts (IEC TS 62257-9-8 and IEC TS 62257-9-5, respectively) establish a comprehensive foundation for assuring product quality. The quality standard sets requirements for truth in advertising, safety, durability, and consumer protection. The test methods define processes to evaluate products, which enables test labs, manufacturers, and others to assess product performance and produce test results that are consistent, comparable, and repeatable.
Benefitting from internationally harmonized standards
By adopting the IEC quality standard and test methods for solar energy kits, PNG will reap the benefits of international harmonisation. To date, 18 countries and a regional body have adopted the IEC test methods and quality standards – and several more are currently pursuing adoption to prevent and discourage the entry of poor-quality products onto the market. As part of this group, PNG can leverage the harmonised standard to facilitate the trade of high-quality off-grid solar products, reduce the cost and effort of quality assurance, and ultimately improve lives through access to affordable renewable energy.