Cost of Electricity To Go Up Again, Power Minister Reveals

Kwabena DonkorMinister for Power, Dr. Kwabena Donkor says Ghanaians would have to pay more for electricity as Government takes measures to tackle the power crisis in the long-term.

This comes barely a month after the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission, PURC, implemented a 2.6% percent increase in electricity tariff.

The sector Minister says this is one of the means to ensure sustainable energy supply. He gave the hint in Accra at the signing of a thermal project agreement with Spain.

The 239 million loan agreement by the Volta River Authority, (VRA) with Spain is to install 186 megawatts of power by the end 2015.

A 186mw T4 plant is to be constructed at Aboadze in the Western Region by a Spanish Company, Technicas Reunidas .

The Minister of Power, Dr.Kwabena Donkor said the agreement is one of the measures by government to end the power crisis.

“The Ministry of Power and its agencies are working around the clock to resolve once and for all the current load shedding that we are going through. We are no longer going to have cheap power. We will be getting to levels of pricing that exists in our immediate neighborhood so the Ghanaian consumer would have to be more efficient in the utilization of power so that he or she can keep the bills down”.

Dr. Donkor called for more investments in the power sector.

“Going forward, I want to see a more aggressive VRA; a VRA that is efficiency driven; a VRA that is strong; a VRA that projects the new Ghana we want to see. We just don’t want to be a generator of power, but we want to be the most efficient generator in the sub-region”

The T4 Thermal Plant, a combined cycle plant is expected to be run on liquefied natural gas or crude oil.

The Chief Executive of the Volta River Authority Kirk Coffie said the company is poised to complete the project.

“Beside this plant, we are also talking to other people to come in as a joint venture to help us add on the needed generation”.

The Business Manager of the Technicas Reunidas also added that Spain would continue to invest in Ghana.

Commenting on the development in an interview on News 360, Energy Analyst, Ishmael Adjekumhene said such increases in electricity tariffs are expected as long as generation appears to be moving towards thermal instead of hydro.

He however questioned the timing of such increases when power is not available. He noted that although any increase at this time may be considered unrealistic from the consumer point of view, the same cannot be said for those generating the power.

The Energy Analyst added that the tariff increases may not be enough to cushion the service providers as long as the economy faces challenges such as depreciation of the cedi amongst others.

“The way I see thermal becoming more dominant we may not be able to run from the prices”.

 

Source: TV3 Network

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