20 November 2015, Abuja — The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) on Wednesday said it has secured a $30 million (about N5.977 billion) grant from the World Bank to study the nature of electricity load demand and energy mix in Nigeria.
TCN’s Deputy Managing Director, Mohammed Atiku, said at the fifth Nigerian International Power Expo and Conference that the country’s power sector lacked reliable data to plan from, hence the funding support from the bank.
Organised by BKG Exhibition Limited in conjunction with the Ministry of Power in Abuja, the event brought together key actors in the sector, with the aim of improving on the existing policies and achievements in the privatised sector.
Atiku who explained that electricity demand and supply are two critical elements that must be studied and quantified to help operators make appropriating plans, said: “Demand and supply are two critical elements in the power sector which has to be understood, to be identified, quantified and then we strategise on how to match them. Failure to do that, the sector will be in very bad shape and I am sorry to say this is what is causing the situation we have in Nigeria.”
According to him, the TCN has initiated the process for the study.
He however added: “This is one of the reason why the TCN on its own, even though it is out of our mandate, we have been seeking to get the actual demand of our electricity. We have gotten a grant from World Bank and will soon embark on a study which is going to be industry wide to determine this load demand and even our energy mix.
“If we have identified our energy demand how do we now get it addressed through our various generating methods? So, in the absence of this, as I said earlier, we have been relying on two major sources of energy that is the thermal, using gas powered station and hydro. Very little attention has been given to other sources like renewable, like nuclear to mention a few.
“When the study is concluded it is going to take 30 months to complete with grant released from the World Bank. It is in the process. I can’t remember exactly the figure but it is going to be as much as $30 million attached to that. But I will confirm that figure. That study will be able to come up with detailed report on the energy demand and supply with appropriate energy mix for the country,” he stated.
The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Power, Louis Edozien, had earlier said the ministry plans to execute a renewable energy and conservation policy, as well as, coal-to-power policy with generation utilities under the National Integrated Power Projects (NIPPs).
Represented by the Director of Renewable Energy, Aboyomi Adebisi, Edozien said there are also plans to secure funding for TCN’s long term expansion plan from the Transmission Development Fund, International Development Bank and multilateral agencies to raise its wheeling capacity to 10,000 megawatts (MW).
*Chineme Okafor – Thisday