West Africa launches Power Pool project in Abuja

By Golfa Francis, Abuja

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The 330 Kilovolts North Core Interconnection project of the West African Power Pool, WAPP, has been lunched and implemented in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital.

The launching of the project symbolises the will of the involved countries to collaborate their effort to develop regional electricity market and provide sustainable electricity supply to their respective population.

Countries involved in the project are Nigeria, Niger, Togo, Benin and Bukina Faso.

According WAPP Board Chairperson, Mr. Usman Gur Mohammed, “it also signifies another concrete step in the attainment of a borderless energy landscape within West Africa as envision and directed by the ECOWAS Heads of State and Government.”

Mr. Gur Mohammed promised continued transparency on the management of resources provided from member countries and partners.

He added that the planning for the project dictates that commissioning shall be achieved in 2023.

The quest for more reliable, cost efficient and secure electricity supply has been a determining factor to build power system interconnections and to enter in to electricity exchange agreements among utilities in neighboring countries.

Power system interconnections enable countries to exchange and export power beyond their borders when there is a supply shortage.

According to the MD/CEO of the Mainstream Energy Solutions Limited, Lamu Audu, owing to the relatively small size of the power system in each West Africa country, “the opening of a regional market is seen as a means of creating a larger market that would enhance competition among power producers.”

“Such investment could help reduce the relatively high cost of electricity in the region and strengthen the reliability of national electricity,” the MD said.

The Nigerian Government re-assured its commitment to achievement of the West African Power Pool and the energy integration ideal of ECOWAS.

Nigeria’s Minister of Power, Saleh Mamman gave the assurance at the 14th session of the West African Power Pool General Assembly in Abuja on Friday, with the theme ‘ECOWAS Regional Electricity Market: today and Future opportunities.’

President Muhammadu Buhari said “Nigeria is committed to achievement of the of the goals of the project.”

He was represented at the event by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha.

The West Africa Power Pool priority project will run from 2019 to 2033. It has an investment requirement of about 36.4 billion US Dollars.

 

Mercy Chukwudiebere