Ghana’s painful days of crippling energy shortage seem a part of history as courageous investments begin to yield dividends, an official disclosed here on Tuesday.
William Amuna an energy expert and former Managing Director of Ghana Grid Company (GridCo) said at an energy forum organized by Siemens Group that Ghana had for some time now been exporting power to western neighbors La Cote d’Ivoire, and eastern neighbors Republics of Togo and Benin.
A crippling energy shortage hit the West African country between 2013 and December 2015 slowing down production which resulted in low growths recorded in the general economy. However thanks to bold investments made by Ghana’s previous government of John Dramani Mahama, the situation abated by December 2015.
“We export power. In fact, for the past few days Ghana has been exporting 100 megawatts (mw) to La Cote d’Ivoire. I guess they have a few problems within their system. Togo has a similar problem and for the past three days not only at peak we give them about 120 mw,” Amuna who was Chairman of the Load Shedding Committee set up to manage the power rationing during the crisis disclosed.
He added: “Ghana once used to be exporters of power to La Cote D’Ivoire but when the power crisis happened we became importers of electricity from La Cote D’Ivoire. Through our collective efforts, we have been able to restored electricity supply to Ghana.”
In spite of the stability, Amuna urged current managers of the energy sector to plan well into the future taking into consideration the recent surge in peak demands.
Siemens has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with government of Ghana to establish a 660 MW combined cycle thermal plant in the country.
Over the past two years the company teamed up with local partners to roll out the largest steam plant in the country contributing 330 megawatts (MW) to the national grid.
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Siemens Ghana Edmund Acheampong on his part underscored the critical role of energy in economic development, attributing the growth being witnessed in the Ghanaian economy lately to the stability in the supply of electricity in the country.
The Chinese funded gas processing plant at Atuabo, near Takoradi, 218 km west of the capital has been one of the stabilizing factors in Ghana’s gas supply for energy production. Enditem