05 February 2014, Lagos – The Nigerian Government has said that hope is being built up for electricity consumers not linked to the national grid as the General Electric (GE) is investing 350m USD into the sector for the provision of 100 % renewable energy to communities that are far from the grid.
The Minister of Power, Chinedu Nebo after the signing ceremony with General Electric Global Chairman, Jeffrey Immelt on a $350m investment at the Bank of Industry Office in Abuja recently, charged interested investors in the sector to take advantage of the facility to develop smaller power plants using smaller turbines in remote grids, so as to ensure the provision of electricity to all the parts of the country.
He described the gesture as a step in the right direction, saying the lack of access to funds has hitherto limited distribution companies from expanding their scope; pointing to Government’s determination to power the rural populace through the “Operation Light Up Nigeria Project,” which has already commenced in some remote communities in Abuja. The Minister lauded the commitment of General Electric and other development partners who are collaborating with the nation’s transformation agenda through the provision of electricity for the emancipation of the Nigerian masses. He added that the importance of power to the socio-economic transformation of the country cannot be overemphasized.
In his remarks at the occasion, the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Olusegun Aganga described power as a catalyst to the nation’s economic development; stressing epileptic power supply has impeded the level of development in the industrial sector.
While describing the event as a true partnership between country and country, the Minister said that General Electric which is a globally recognized corporation also extends its activities to healthcare, locomotives and oil and gas, among others.
Responding to the remarks, the Global Chairman of General Electric, Jeffrey Immelt applauded the success of the recent power privatisation exercise, stating that its transparency has improved the nation’s image globally. He also commended the Ministry for creating the enabling environment for entrepreneurs to invest in the sector.
Also speaking, the Chief Executive of Stanbic IBTC, Sola David-Borha described power as a key sector and said that the bank is prepared to partner with General Electric towards ensuring that needed financing is provided for the supply of power across the nation.
– Press Release