• Thursday, June 20, 2024
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Capacity building, policies, valid data key to achieving Nigeria’s 30GW goal by 2030

Capacity building, policies, valid data key to achieving Nigeria’s 30GW goal by 2030

Energy experts have said that capacity building, valid data, and effective policies that will attract financing are factors that can help Nigeria achieve its vision 30:30:30, which aims at achieving 30 GW of electricity by the year 2030, with renewable energy contributing 30 percent of the energy mix.

During the 82nd Power Dialogue, themed, “Vision 30:30:30: Accessing Finance for the Next Phase,”, industry experts in the power sector outlined ways Nigeria can foster its 30 GW ambition.

The Power Dialogue is a monthly public discourse series that aims to share information and pragmatic ideas, advocate policy positions, and highlight investment opportunities in the Nigerian power sector.

Ayo Ademilua, president of the Renewable Energy Association of Nigeria, said that Nigeria needs to have validated and harmonised data on the current energy access statistics of the country.

“We need to identify the total off-grid, underserved, and served population to tell us where we are. We need policies that will attract investors. The only thing that attracts investors is the outlook of your policies and framework,” he said.

Ademilua added that Nigeria needs to create a standardised reporting and monitoring platform to harmonise the progress we are making from time to time.

According to Ademilua, Egypt has 60–70 GW and a population of 110 million. However, Nigeria, with 200 million people, has 4GW. Even as we are taking baby steps, we need to know what we have achieved.

Ademilua further said that one of the major issues we are having in Nigeria’s power sector is the transmission backbone infrastructure. “We need financing for the backbone, which is our expressway of moving power.

“Nigeria needs fiscal policies and incentives that can attract foreign capital and provide affordable financing that can match the kind of projection and development we want to achieve.”

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For Edu Okeke, managing director, Azura Power, Nigeria is blessed with hydropower and sunlight for solar. Achieving the target of 30 percent is not a big deal, but having a robust strategy on how to attract finance to develop our energy needs is key.

“Nigeria does not have a lot of investors scrambling to do projects that will support the vision. We have to go back to policies. It is all about policies. There is financing, but financing goes to places where it is accepted,” he said.

“From 2012 to 2013, Nigeria Bulk Electricity Trading had a lot of investors. Developers were all over Nigeria. There were so many independent power producers that were under plan then. They all disappeared because of the policies that were brought about. Every investor wants to make money, and it is not charity,” he said.

Okeke added that the limitations that we have had are due to the government policies in the last number of years. If the incoming administration can reduce those limitations, achieving vision 30:30:30 will not be a big deal. He also classified overregulation by the government as a major challenge in Nigeria’s power sector.

Ademilua further said Nigeria needs to build capacity in the entire value chain of the power sector. Vision 30:30:30 is seven years from now. We need to be adding nothing less than 3 to 4 GW of electricity annually.

“The total capacity of renewable energy we have in Nigeria today is not up to 1 GW.” We need to speed up, running at least an average of 2GW starting next year,” he said.

Ademilua added that the energy transition plan has helped us with the finances required. With $410 billion over the next few years to 2060, we will be able to achieve the policies in the vision. “Funding is available, but Nigeria needs to position policies and frameworks that will attract it,” he said.

It is estimated that Nigeria will require $10 billion annually to implement the energy transition plan by 2060, which amounts to $410 billion. An additional $1.9 trillion is required to attain the country’s net-zero targets.

Abubakar Ali-Dapshima, director, of Renewable and Rural Power Access at the Federal Ministry of Power, added that investors are looking for a return on investments, and energy efficiency is key.

According to Ali-Dapshima, the government builds energy projects for testing the policies and concessions them to private individuals that have the capacity, with a mandate that they can expand. We need to collaborate with the private sector to support the vision.