• Wednesday, July 24, 2024
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FG woos investors in electricity transmission, supply chain

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The Federal Government in Abuja on Monday canvassed for foreign investors in the transmission of the electricity supply chain to address the infrastructure deficit in the sector.

The electricity supply chain is made up of the Generating Companies (GENCOs), Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) and Distribution Companies (DISCOs).

The GENCOS and DISCOS have been privatised, leaving only the TCN in government’s control.

The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, represented by the Minister of State for Power, Alhaji Mohammed Wakil, made the call at the inaugural TCN investors’ conference.

He described the transmission sub-sector as critical to the supply chain, and stressed the need for investors to key into the sector to realise the transformation agenda for the sector.

“We are trying to open up the sector, we want foreign investors to come and invest in the transmission sector.

“So, this conference is meant to bring all the stakeholders together to forge a way forward for the proper funding of the transmission sector,’’ he said.

Nebo said government was already exploring various means of funding, including bonds, and sovereign wealth fund

He assured that the Federal Government was working hard to create the enabling environment for investors to thrive and improve the power situation in the country.

He, however, said the issue of inadequate gas supply and vandalism of gas pipelines still remain a major challenge to realising steady power supply to Nigerians.

Earlier, the TCN Board Chairman, Alhaji Ibrahim Waziri, in his remarks, stressed the need for more funding for the TCN to expand and upgrade its facilities in line with international best practice.

Waziri said the TCN needs about eight billion dollars in the next five years to prosecute its capacity expansion programme and become a regional hub for electricity trade.

He assured investors that the Federal Government had put in place a power sector reform programme.

The chairman said the reform would ensure transparency in the regulation of power utilities, including the setting, adjustment of tariffs, protecting interest of consumers and investors.

“The reform programmes aim at encouraging private sector investment in the power sector through establishment of independent power production schemes and facilitating direct electricity sales by independent power producers through open and non-discriminatory access to Nigeria’s transmission system,’’ he said.

The conference was attended by officials from the TCN, Ministry of Power and Finance, foreign investors, development partners and the World Bank.

NAN