President Akufo-Addo has reiterated government’s determination to make Ghana self sufficient in electricity for the industrial and domestic use to drive home the socioeconomic development of the country.
According to him, ensuring sufficient, effective, efficient and cost effective electricity power supply was top of the problems government was willing to address.
Speaking at the ground breaking ceremony of the Bridge Power Project at Kpone, in the Greater Accra Region, the President noted that for the past five years, the country’s experiences with power supply had been traumatic; affecting all aspects of lives.
“… The economy has been damaged, businesses have been destroyed, individual and family lives have been put under severe stress and our self confidence dented” he said.
President Akufo-Addo indicated that, the Bridge Power project is one of the several initiatives government will introduce along the power supply chain along with the cost effective, efficient and sustainable energy production.
He said, efforts must be made to produce power to contribute to the install capacity in meeting the growing demand so as to drive the growth of the private sector.
According to him, government would create enabling environment for private sector to flourish whilst strong efforts are made to protect the public purse.
“…we have commenced actions that will improve transparency and help transform the economy, make it competitive.”
“…we cannot achieve competitiveness when our energy sector is burdened with debt.”
He said, “Bridge Power is a first of its kind in Ghana. The project has been customized to provide quick and reliable energy production for Ghanaians in order to assist Ghana’s economic growth and to create jobs,”
The President also averred that sustainable energy supply will drive government’s ‘One-District-One-Factory' policy agenda hence, every efforts shall be taken to make Ghana a great place to do business.
He also stressed that; government will introduce a new tariff policy that will reclassify consumer categories in order to protect lifelines of strategic industrial consumers.
The Bridge Power Project
The Early Power consortium received parliamentary approval from government and subsequently signed a 20-year power purchase agreement (PPA), which includes a 5-year extension option, with the Electricity Corporation of Ghana (ECG) for the 400 megawatt (MW) Greenfield Bridge Power project.
The Early Power consortium is comprised of Endeavor Energy, a leading Africa-focused independent power development and generation company, Sage, a leading independent trading firm in Ghana and the world's premier digital industrial company General Electric through its GE Power division.
It reached financial close on Bridge Power in December 2016 to develop the project in two phases – 194 MW in Phase 1 and 206 MW in Phase 2 in the coastal city of Tema, the biggest port in Ghana, 26 kilometers east of Accra.
Bridge Power is expected to start producing 144 MW of first power within the first six months to help the country meet near-term power shortages.
The project, which is being built in the most economically active part of the country so that transmission losses to most residential and industrial customers will be very low, will have significant economic benefits.
Meanwhile, the president pointed out that, while Ghana’s economy has grown by an average rate of 7 percent annually over the past 16 years, the provision of additional, reliable power will further bolster the country’s economic success.
Ghana is estimated to need at least an additional 2,000 MW of power generation over the next five years. Bridge Power will not only provide more than 12 percent of the country’s planned power generating capacity by 2020, it will also enable the growth of industrial sectors, light manufacturing and agro-based processing.
Bridge Power is the first Ghanaian project to use a Put Call Option Agreement (PCOA).
It allows the Ghanaian government to purchase the plant and associated infrastructure in the unlikely event of an early termination, which means any payment under the PCOA will result in the government and by extension, the Ghanaian people, getting a valuable asset in return.