As a result of a new partnership between a subsidiary of BP Solar and a Moroccan counterpart, 20,000 people living far from electrical supplies will soon gain access to lighting, radio, television and refrigerators via a local solar energy distribution network.Montpellier, France – September 17, 2003 [SolarAccess.com] Apex-BP Solar, a subsidiary of BP France, in partnership with the Moroccan oil company CMH (Compagnie Marocaine des Hydrocarbures) has been awarded a major contract for the supply and installation of solar power systems, which will provide electricity to households in Morocco’s Chichaoua Province, south of Marrakesh. Apex-BP Solar was awarded the contract for the implementation of the project by Office National de l’Electricitý (ONE), the Moroccan state-owned electricity utility. The partnership will be responsible for implementing a turnkey project covering the supply and installation of solar panel systems manufactured by BP Solar over three years and for managing the installations, providing maintenance and invoicing customers for services provided over a ten-year period. A new company, BP Solar Maroc, is being established for this purpose in Marrakesh. “This program is of prime importance to Morocco’s rural population in that it will provide basic domestic amenities in areas where there is no conventional electricity supply grid,” Apex-BP Solar CEO Arnaud Mine said. “It is also very important to BP Solar, providing important recognition of the solar engineering and rural contract management activities needed in many areas of Africa. In addition, this project will represent a greenhouse gas emissions reduction equivalent to 10, 000 tons of CO2 over a 10 year period, contributing to the alleviation of global warming.” “This project is a concrete example of the part solar energy is called on to play in sustainable development in Africa,” Michel de Fabiani, president of BP France and BP vice president Europe said. “It combines protection of the environment with economic and social considerations, while obviating the need to set up capital-intensive infrastructure in the regions concerned.” Apex-BP Solar is based in Montpellier in the southern part of France and specializes in the design and construction of solar panel systems and incorporating BP Solar modules in installations designed to customers’ specifications. Apex-BP Solar has activities in France as well as in French overseas territories and French speaking Africa.