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The East African : Dec 8th 2014
28 The EastAfrican OUTLOOK DECEMBER 6-12,2014 Region speeds up energy projects with a E By ALLAN OLINGO The East African ast African governments have doubled their efforts to in- crease energy output, with several multi-million dollar projects on the cards. The aim is to meet rising demand as well as attract more investments, after the 2014 World Bank Ease of Doing Business report noted that low energy output remains a hurdle for investors. In the past two months, Rwanda, Tanzania and Kenya have announced a number of power upgrade projects. Rwanda recently announced that it will meet its 2017 target of increasing access to electricity to 70 per cent of the country’s population from 22 per cent currently. The country’s energy sector strategy plan 2013-18 projects an electricity demand of 563MW to be generated from a sustainable generation mix of hydro, methane, geothermal and solar, gradually phasing out thermal power by the end of 2017. Last week, James Musoni, Rwan- da’s Minister of Infrastructure, said that the country was working hard to streamline investment procedures in the power sector, aimed at attracting the private sector. “The government through the Rwanda Development Board plans to achieve an additional 408MW by 2018. We want to stand out in all the key investment areas. Energy costs have been our undoing especially when it comes to attracting investments. We want to reverse this,” Mr Musoni said at an investor’s conference in Kigali targeting the energy sector. According to the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business report, Rwanda’s energy is expensive and limited, with electricity costing 22 US cents per kWh compared with 8 US cents-10 US cents in the rest of the region. Consumers in Uganda and Tanzania pay 11.8 and 7.4 US cents per kilowatt of elec t r ic i t y respectively, while in Kenya the cost is 25.7 US cents. The 2013 World Bank electricity consumption figures rank Rwanda’s per capita energy consumption at 25.78 kilowatts, Burundi’s at 18.34 kilowatts, Uganda’s at 65.94 kilowatts, Tanzania’s at 76.50 kilowatts and Kenya’s at 128.24 kilowatts. Rwanda’s electricity generation more than doubled, from 45MW to 110.8MW, between 2005 and 2013, increasing access from 2 per cent to 22 per cent of the population. Currently, Rwanda is planning a number of energy projects including the $300 million 80MW Rusumo hydroelectric project to be constructed on Kagera River, the $450 million 147MW Rusizi lll hydro project, and a 200MW methane gas concession in Lake Kivu. “We also plan to construct other domestic hydropower plants with a 150MW installed capacity and various high voltage transmission lines to evacuate generated electric power for stable and reliable power supply to manufactures. This is why we are looking for $5 billion energy investments through public-private partnerships,” said Mr Musoni. Imported power Mr Musoni said that in the short term, the country will be looking to its neighbours to import cheaper power to meet the energy demand. “We will be importing cheaper power from East African Power Pool member states which will help strengthen bilateral power trade,” said Mr Musoni. Rwanda is also to benefit from a $6.2 million loan from the Netherlands that will go towards the third phase of the Energy Access and Rollout Program (EARP3). The money will be used to speed up a number of projects. “We are supporting Rwanda in its energy projects so that it can meet the demand of investors,” said Leoni Cuelenaere, the Netherlands ambassador to Rwanda, during the grant-signing ceremony last month. “Rwanda has shown a desire to develop and we need to support it in attracting more private sector investments. It needs KEY PROJECTS Rwanda: The $300 million 80MW Rusumo hydroelectric project to be constructed in Kagera River; the $450 million 147MW Rusizi lll Hydro project, and a 200MW methane gas concession in Lake Kivu. Technicians from Kenya Power replace old electricity poles in Eldoret town in Kenya’s Rift Valley. Pic: File Also on the cards are domestic hydropower plants with a 150MW installed capacity and various high voltage transmission lines. Tanzania: The government will spend $228 million to construct a 400kV power transmission line that will interconnect its national power grid with Kenya’s through Namanga. The proposed project includes the construction and operation of a 510km-400kV interconnection power line. Kenya: The country has added 140MW of geothermal into the grid. Last week, the Kenya Electricity Generating Company connected the Olkaria I unit five to the national grid, paving the way for the completion of the 280MW geothermal power project. to have more people connec the grid.” World Bank director for Ea rica Johannes Zutt said that R da has a huge demand for e because of its improved bu environment that hFas seen tors flock into the country. “The country needs regulatory environment to investors into its energy the a s Its energy deficit remains a constraint to private investm Mr Zutt said. energy Tanzania has also disclos strategic plan that see it generate up to 15,000M power by 2025. Tanzania’s M ter for Energy and Minerals peter Mhongo, said that th rent electricity consumption The Kenya-Tanzania interconnection is to become a critical link in future regional power p Kenya Electricity Transmission Co THE NUMBERS 408MW Additional power that Rwanda plans to achieve by 2018. 15,000MW Amount of power that Tanzania hopes to generate by 2025. 6,362MW Added installed capacity that Kenya targets by 2016.
Dec 1st 2014
Dec 15th 2014