Standards and Labeling

Standards and
Labeling Program

To improve access to electricity, it was necessary to (i) identify the political obstacles affecting the growth of the renewable energy (in particular photovoltaic solar energy (standalone and mini-grids)) and energy efficiency market; (ii) help countries adopt the common external tariff to facilitate cross-border trade in standalone solar products; (iii) develop a regional quality assurance framework (adoption of standards) to facilitate the supply of electrical appliances and equipment; (iv) strengthen human capital and increase entrepreneurial activity by providing training to develop adequate and required skills through a structured entrepreneurship development mechanism, which will ensure reliable service to beneficiaries and create opportunities employment; (v) provide access to financing to companies and beneficiaries in the renewable energy and energy efficiency sector; and (vi) reduce risk for the promotion of new technologies and new business models.

It is in this context that ECREEE has developed several minimum energy performance standards adopted by ECOWAS, with the support of the Program Promotion of climate-friendly Electricity Market in the ECOWAS Region (ProCEM), funded by the German Ministry of Cooperation (BMZ) through the GIZ, seven standards on electric water heaters, fans, televisions, mini-grid PV installation guide, mini-grid PV installation, mini-grid inspection mini-grid PV inverters and one directive on standards and labeling of electrical appliances from 2019 to 2023; of the Regional Off-Grid Electricity Access Project (ROGEAP) financed by the World Bank (WB), two standards on regional adoption of Lighting Global’s quality standards for pico-PV products and solar home system (SHS); from the Environment and Energy Management Agency (ADEME) two standards on refrigerators and air conditioners from 2015 to 2016; and United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) two standards on efficient on-grid and off-grid lighting from 2014 to 2015.

The regional adoption of the quality standard and labeling directive for electrical appliances and equipment and solar installations will help ECOWAS achieve some of its most important mandates, including: the promotion and creation of a common market; harmonization of standards and conformity assessment procedures; reduction of technical barriers to trade; stimulation of intranational and international trade and strengthening of the industrialization of the region. Finally, the adoption of these standards and directive will contribute to achieving the objectives of the ECOWAS renewable energy policy of serving approximately 25% of the ECOWAS rural population should also be served by mini-grids and stand-alone systems by 2030; and the objectives of the ECOWAS energy efficiency policy to achieve savings potential in the energy sector making it possible to release a power of 2000 MW, all directly contributing to the achievement of universal access to energy.


Thirteen (13) regional standards and one (1) directive on electrical equipment and appliances listed below have been developed, harmonized and adopted:

  • Standard for technical specification for Mains Voltage General Lighting Service Lamps
  • Standard for Technical Specifications for Off-Grid Lighting Products
  • Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) – Part 1 – refrigeration appliances
  • Minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) – Part 2 – air conditioner
  • Minimum energy performance standard for televisions
  • Minimum energy performance standard for electric storage water heaters
  • Minimum energy performance standard for electric comfort fans
  • Directive on minimum energy performance standards and labeling of electrical appliances and equipment in ECOWAS Member States
  • IEC standard for renewable energy systems and hybrid systems for rural electrification – Part 9-8: Integrated systems
  • IEC Standard for Renewable Energy and Hybrid Systems for Rural Electrification – Part 9-5: Integrated Systems – Laboratory Evaluation and Standalone Renewable Energy Products for Rural Electrification
  • Standard for the installation guide for solar photovoltaic mini-grids
  • Standard relating to minimum technical requirements for the installation of photovoltaic mini-grids
  • Minimum technical requirements standard for the inspection of a photovoltaic solar mini-grid installation
  • Minimum energy performance standard for mini-grid inverters.

In addition, the following activities relating to capacity building (training of trainers) of the Quality Assurance (QA) framework at the regional level of quality standards for pico-PV products and SHS kits were carried out. It is between:

  • Conformity assessment
  • Market surveillance
  • Application of standards to take corrective measures
  • Monitoring and evaluation to systematically and regularly collect information on QA activities and make necessary improvements.


Three (3) standards are currently being developed. The process of harmonization and adoption of these standards will follow. It concerns:

  • Standard for denatured ethanol intended for use as cooking and household appliance fuel in the ECOWAS region
  • Specification standard for denatured fuel ethanol intended for blending with gasoline
  • Standard for biomass cooking stoves.

Under Preparation

  • Development of national quality assurance frameworks for quality standards for pico-PV products and SHS kits ;
  • Strengthening the capacities of national actors for the adoption and application of harmonized standards ;
  • National awareness campaigns to promote high-quality off-grid solar products. A good communications program disseminates useful information about its objectives and activities to stakeholders.

  • Regional energy efficiency standards for electrical appliances and equipment developed, harmonized and adopted;
  • Regional standards for renewable energy electrical appliances and equipment developed, harmonized and adopted;
  • Regional labeling directive developed, harmonized and adopted;
  • Capacity of regional focal points within the framework of Quality Assurance (QA) strengthened
  • National quality assurance frameworks for quality standards developed
  • Capacity of national actors for the adoption and application of adopted standards strengthened;
  • National awareness campaigns to promote electrical appliances and equipment carried out.

National standardization bodies of the 15 ECOWAS Member States

Department in charge of Energy of the ECOWAS Commission

Department in charge of quality of the ECOWAS Commission

World Bank (WB)





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