As part of the company’s global “100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project”, Panasonic donated 630 solar lanterns (BG-BL03) to Vietnam on March16, 2015. This marks Panasonic’s first donation to the country under this initiative.
Though the national electrification rate of Vietnam is 96.1%* and relatively high, many people belonging to ethnic minorities in mountainous areas still live without access to electricity. Without electricity, they are isolated from information and face difficulties, particularly in the fields of education, healthcare and economic development. This often leads to a vicious cycle of poverty.
* Source: International Energy Agency, World Energy Outlook 2014
The donated solar lanterns are expected to help resolve these social challenges in off-grid areas of Dien Bien Province. Schools, clinics and community-based organizations are expected to benefit from the donation.
The 100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project was launched as part of Panasonic’s corporate citizenship activities (social contribution activities) to utilize its technologies and products to help resolve various social challenges faced in emerging and developing countries that have poor electrical power conditions. The goal is to donate 100,000 solar lanterns to NPOs/ NGOs, humanitarian organizations and international organizations by the year 2018, Panasonic’s 100th anniversary.
Panasonic previously donated more than 24,000 solar lanterns to nine countries in the first two years of the 100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project, launched in FY2012. In FY2014, Panasonic donated 6,018 solar lanterns to Cambodia and Myanmar, 2,376 to the Philippines, and 1,020 to Indonesia . Together with the number of solar lanterns donated to Vietnam this time, more than 34,000 lanterns have been donated under this global project.In addition, Panasonic will continue to donate solar lanterns to other Asian and African countries. By the end of March, 2015, 40,000 solar lanterns are expected to be donated under the project.
As part of its efforts to pursue “A Better Life, A Better World,” Panasonic will continue the “100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project” to contribute tosustainable development and to the achievement of the United NationsMillennium Development Goals (MDGs).