24 November 2015, Abuja – The Federal Government had declared that immense investment opportunities to deepen the development of the power sector still abound despite visible achievements recorded so far.
The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Power, Mr. Louis Edozien, said this at the 5th Nigeria International Power Expo and Conference, which held weekend in Abuja, with the theme: “Private Sector Partnership in Achieving Sustainability of Power Supply in Nigeria.”
He said this administration has shown singular leadership and initiatives in ensuring that Nigeria leap frogs in its quest to achieving its dream of becoming one of the best economies in the world by the year 2020.
Edozien, who was represented by Mr. Abayomi Adebisi, listed the achievements recorded and the defining future trend within the context of the new private led power sector, which includes the establishment and implementation of a Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Policy, embedded with coal to power.
He said the ongoing reform of the Ministry is to equip it with the right competitiveness and capacity to handle policy issues as well as ensuring conducive and enabling environment for investment in power. He added that Government’s agenda in the future is the divestment by the Niger Delta Power Holding Company, NDPHC assets in the National Integrated Power Projects, NIPP.
The Permanent Secretary also said that Government will assist the Transmission Company of Nigerian, TCN, in accessing long term expansion funds, including the proposed Transmission Development Fund, and other international development funds from banks and multilateral agencies.
He noted that these funding matrixes will ensure a reliable transmission network system capable of conveniently wheeling up to 10,000MW of produced power in the short and medium term, as well as providing a solid foundation for future growth of the sector.
He also said the Ministry will undertake pre-feasibility studies for remote and off-grid locations that will incorporate their commercial frameworks for the establishment’s utilisation.
He also argued that privatisation successes have shown clearly that Government alone cannot develop the power sector, but with shared responsibility with the private sector, more successes would be recorded.
The Deputy Managing Director, TCN, Mr. Abubakar Atiku, gave the assurance that the transmission company “can deliver 6,000MW without overloading the system.”
He said TCN since 2002, had embarked on ongoing projects aimed at expanding the wheeling capacity of the system, describing some of those projects as critical to ensuring grid stability.
Atiku however bemoaned the paucity of funds in the 2015 appropriation, where only N1 billion was provided for TCN. In order to bridge this funding gap, TCN is exploring external funding sources to complete some of its ongoing projects.
Other sector players, who spoke at the event including the Managing Director, Rural Electrification Agency, REA, Mr. Ken Achimugu, enjoined distribution companies, Discos, to play its role and key into its already completed projects.
He described the Agency as a socio economic one created to address the electricity needs of the rural poor.