Experts in the Nigerian energy sector have called for a total policy overhaul of the electricity industry to stimulate private sector participation as the current energy crisis may not abate with existing policy regime. They posit that about $100 billion investment is required to generate 100,000 megawatts of power, a feat that requires public-private participation (PPP) for it to be achieved.
Speaking recently at the sidelines of the LightUp Nigeria Conference organised by Brand Zone Innovation Conference, they declared that the current electricity generation of about 5,000 Megawatts was too little for a nation with over 190 million population and widening industrial base.
Former Petroleum Minister, Odein Ajumogobia, SAN, said the dream of government to fully transform the economy through its industrialisation agenda would continue to suffer setbacks because the power sector is not solid enough to support such initiative. He argued that Nigeria required an investment of $1billion to generate every 1,000 megawatts of electricity, hence to generate 100,000 megawatts of electricity will cost about $100 billion.
“This fund cannot be supplied by government under the present circumstances; only private sector funding can support investment of this magnitude, but if it must happen; then there must be a complete review of the power sector policy. A whole lot of things should be done. In the first place, the present tariff structure must be reviewed, the gas sector should be repositioned to allow for appropriate gas pricing to encourage gas suppliers increase capacity,” Ajumogobia said.
Also speaking on the issue, president Nigerian Gas Association (NGA), Dada Thomas, urged the government to expunge tax on gas and to review the current gas price in order to enable exploration and production companies to profitably execute projects.