FG’S new gas push will deepen energy access for Nigerians – Clarke Energy
Yiannis Tsantilas, the managing director of Clarke Energy, a leading energy solution provider in Nigeria has said that the country’s power market has made significant progress despite challenges and government’s renewed focus on gas will deepen energy access for Africa’s largest economy.
Tsantilas said the growth potential in the energy sector is still significant despite current challenges.
“When I compare my experience in the last 18 years with the reality on ground, I think that Nigeria has made significant progress.
However, some things need improvement but more often than not people tend to focus only on what is not going well,” Tsantilas said.
He further said that the privatisation of the power sector in Nigeria was a remarkable feat. This led to the unbundling of the old Power Holding Company of Nigeria ( PHCN) into new power generation, transmission and distribution companies.
“This courageous step has placed Nigeria ahead of a lot of countries who are yet to do the same.
“The government’s focus on the utilisation of natural gas to increase power generation capacity largely through gas- fired power plants is another achievement.
“The Ajaokuta-kadunaKano ( AKK) pipeline infrastructure that is being constructed by the federal government will increase the availability of natural gas for industries located in the commercial territories along the pipeline corridors.
“The initiative will impact the gas value chain market, help industries lower their cost of production from the utilisation of piped natural gas to develop private plants to meet their power requirement, which also helps make quality products available at affordable prices to the consumers.
There has been significant progress in Nigeria’s regulatory policies and market development. Perhaps, we would have seen more progress if the global recession had not impacted Nigeria, he said.
RCE Overseas Ltd recently partnered with Clarke Energy to deliver the 10MW Jenbacher gas-fired power plant which provides electricity to the NCDMB Towers, in Bayelsa state.
The plant provides 24/7 electricity supply to the 17 floor office complex of the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) building, which was christened Nigerian Content Tower, four storey multi-level car park facility, one-thousand seater capacity conference hall and Other ancillary facilities
“We are privileged to have participated in this world class project both in terms of quality and delivery. The project demonstrates how far Nigeria has come.
Clarke Energy provided technical support for RCE Overseas Limited, which was one of the primary contractors on the project. “We believe we were considered because we have demonstrated an excellent customer-focused and technical capability in designing and maintenance of power stations for over 20 years in the Nigerian market. This is what has established us as the number one player in the captive power generation market segment.
“Although, we keep up a low profile; individuals who are close to the market are familiar with the Clarke Energy brand and INNIO Jenbacher range of gas generators. Whereas those who are grounded within the sector know we are engineers and what we care about is providing reliable solutions to our customers.
RCE Overseas Ltd and Clarke Energy have developed a strategic partnership over the years which has led to more productive delivery of large-scale projects. More specifically, the leadership of both companies enjoy an excellent relationship, which has helped to facilitate the designs and customised solutions required to comply with their contractual obligations.
Speaking about the project which the company is now looking to replicate in the other parts of the country, Jean Merhej, general manager of RCE Overseas, with over 20 years experiencing managing projects in the energy sector said the Nigerian market is big and the appetite for new projects is tremendous especially in providing power for industries.
“Industries that take advantage of the opportunity to invest in Nigeria will see returns for their investment. The country is growing and industries are springing up in many places outside Lagos but electrification rate has not kept pace.
“This provides an opportunity for power companies to fill the gap seen in the national grid that supplies about half of Nigeria’s electricity needs. Private companies can play in this space and gas provides the cheapest option,” said Merhej.