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Friday, 11 June 2021

The $568m West African Power Pool North Core project that will boost electricity supply in five West African countries is being funded by Nigeria and development financial institutions, the Federal Government said on Thursday.

Minister of Power, Sale Mamman, outlined the three development partners funding the power project alongside Nigeria to include African Development Bank , Agence Française de Développement and the World Bank.

He disclosed this in Abuja at the 1st Joint Ministerial Steering Committee meeting of the West African Power Pool North Core Regional 330KV Project

Countries to benefit from the WAPP project include Nigeria, Niger, Benin, Togo and Burkina Faso.

Correspondent had reported on Thursday that the four other countries in the project – Niger, Togo, Benin and Burkina Faso, were collaborating to buy unutilised power produced in Nigeria.

Speaking on Thursday at the joint ministerial meeting in Abuja, Mamman said the transmission lines for the large-scale WAPP project for the five nations would be funded by Nigeria and development partners.

He said, “This large-scale project is financed by the African Development Bank , Agence Française de Développement, the World Bank and the Federal Government of Nigeria at a total amount of $568m.

“Upon completion of the project, the operation and maintenance of the entire infrastructure shall be handed over to the utility companies of the participating countries.”

He explained that within the framework of WAPP, the governments of the five nations developed a sub-regional interconnection project referred

to as the 330kV WAPP North Core Regional Interconnection Project.

Mamman said the aim of the project was to facilitate efficient energy trade in the sub-region among other benefits, as the programme had been assented to by the ECOWAS heads of state and government.

Their assent, he said, was contained in their approval in December 2018, of the ECOWAS Master Plan for the Development of Regional Generation and Transmission Infrastructure 2019-2033.

“The North Core Project involves the construction of approximately 875km of 330kV and 24km 225kV transmission lines from Nigeria to Burkina Faso, through Niger and Benin with associated substations,” the minister said.

He added, “The project will also involve the electrification of rural communities located within a 5km radius on both sides of the line, and the implementation of several environmental and social mitigation measures.

These include, among others,

the implementation of resettlement action plans to provide compensation for persons and communities affected by the project.”

He observed that these days, the limited access to electricity and endemic electricity shortages had constituted a bottleneck to the socioeconomic development of ECOWAS member states.

To address this, Mamman stated that the WAPP-North Core Regional Inter-connector was seen as a game changer that could shape the energy landscape of the sub-region through effective and efficient power trade.

About IWIN

The Independent Energy Watch Initiative (I-WIN), an enterprise of Energy ConServ and the Roundtable for the Growth and Development of Power (RODEP), is an online/web based power sector portal that strives to engage stakeholders and the Nigerian public on topical issues in the power sector.

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