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New Investors To Take Over Power Sector Soon – FG

Lagos – The Federal Government on Thursday said it would soon call for bids from new investors in the power generation and distribution chain on account of the failure of current investors to improve the nation’s electricity industry.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo gave the hint at the commissioning of the power substation infrastructure built by the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC), at Abeokuta, Ogun State.

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He disclosed that the Federal Government had already taken the decision to further open the electricity sector to new investors after realising that the national grid system could not meet the power demand of consumers.

Osinbajo added that government had approved substantial change strategies, backed by various policies that would encourage more investments to the industry.

He said the present administration had made some remarkable impact by increasing installed generation capacity to 13,437 megawatts available capacity to 8,342 MW, and 7,000 evacuation capacity.

He said the inability of distribution companies (DisCos) to deliver grid power to end users had significantly distorted the efforts of government.

The vice president noted that power distribution companies’ insufficient infrastructure had restricted distribution to about 4,000MW and at peak periods 5,400MW.

He added that government had identified the weaknesses of the DisCos, which include inadequate capital to provide needed infrastructure and metering challenges, among others.

Osinbajo added that in order to resolve these challenges, government introduced the Meter Asset Provider (MAP) scheme to resolve the lingering metering challenges in the system, adding that so far, the DisCos had received and processed about 250,000 applications from customers, and that hopefully the number would quadruple by the end of the year.

He expressed optimism that with the implementation of the MAP, the industry would be able to close the 5.3 million metering gap existing currently.

Other measures taken by government, Osinbajo said, include the Siemens Phased Electrification Roadmap, which was flagged off recently by President Muhammadu Buhari.

He said under phase 1, transmission and distribution would be able to deliver 7,000MW, and under phase 2, 11,000MW would be achieved, while 25,000MW was targeted under phase 3.

He explained that government expected the DisCos to recapitalise and come up with resources to improve on their services, but even at that the market was set to welcome new investors in the distribution and generation subsectors.

In his remarks, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the NDPHC, Chiedu Ugbo, said the company’s contribution to the transmission grid system had transformed the hitherto radial 330KV/132KV grid into a more robust grid system with significant provision of alternative power flow routes which now served as redundancies and which had resulted in a more reliable and stable grid.

He recalled the commissioning of the 220 kilometres long 330 KV Double Circuit lines providing alternative supply routes to Abuja and the FCT from Geregu, through a new Lokoja substation, a new Gwagwalada substation into the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Katampe and Apo substations with several significant substation development along that route.

He added that between 2015 and now about 30 NIPP Transmission Projects inherited by the present administration had been completed while over 70 distribution projects had also been completed across the six geopolitical zones.

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The post New Investors To Take Over Power Sector Soon – FG appeared first on Independent Newspapers Nigeria.

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