Budget Presents Projects Undertaken Under Energy
A total of 253 rural communities were supplied with electricity under the SHEP 4 Project, and a survey to connect additional 1,200 communities is completed, Dr Kwabena Duffuor, Finance Minister, said on Thursday. Street lights were also built in Sunyani, Tema, Ho and Wa while work on the Accra and Kumasi projects is progressing, "Work on the design and construction of 400 megawatts hydro power plant at Bui to enhance power generation is 32 percent complete, while work on the construction of 132 megawatts combined power cycle plant at Aboadze has also commenced.", the Minister said in a 2011 budget statement proposals, which he presented to Parliament in Accra. The Minister said the provision of circuit breakers to protect equipment and increase transformer capacity in Techiman, Kumasi, Winneba and Akosombo was 80 per cent complete while the Replacement of wooden poles with steel tubular in the Volta Region was completed with civil works for the construction of No. 2x20 MVA primary sub-station also 70 per cent completed. The Minister said the Tamale and Kumasi Polytechnics and the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology were supported with solar training and testing equipment for the training of technicians. He said the development of the Jubilee fields for the production of oil was on track in addition to work on the sea floor and the Floating, Production, Storage and Off-loading (FPSO) which were 95 per cent and 98 percent complete respectively. The construction of four 10,000 cubic metre storage tanks with ancillary facility at the Accra plains depot had been completed while an inland petroleum jetty, River Barges and Tug boats at Debre was 80 per cent complete. Dr Duffuor said following finalization of a study of the operations of the electricity sector, government adopted a comprehensive financial restructuring and recovery plan for the sector. The key elements of the plan are an upward adjustment in electricity tariffs, implementation of actions to strengthen revenue collection by the electricity sector public utilities and the adoption of a plan to restructure the balance sheets of the utilities by the end of 2011. "Going forward, tariffs will be subject to quarterly reviews to ensure continued cost recovery. However, Government will continue to make provision in the Budget to provide subsidies to support life-line consumers of electricity." Efforts will be geared at increasing access of households and industry to reliable and adequate energy supply and the diversification of the national energy mix to include the use of indigenous sources of energy in Ministry of Energy in the 2011 fiscal year. This will be achieved through the rehabilitation and expansion of energy infrastructure. Specific interventions will also be undertaken to increase access to modern forms of energy to the poor and vulnerable through the extension of the national grid to poor communities. Dr Duffuor said specific projects and programmes to be implemented or continued in the year included the Bui Hydroelectric Power Project, the Ghana Energy Development and Access Project, the Ghana-Togo Benin 330kv Power interconnection project, the Power systems reinforcement project, the West African Power Pool (Phases 1&2), the 30kv Aboadzi-Volta transmission line project and major activities in oil and gas. He said under the present tariff code, the energy saving compact fluorescent lamp is exempted from all taxes. In furtherance of promoting energy savings and reduction of power consumption, light emitting diode (LED) lamps were being added to the exemption list while local companies producing energy saving bulbs would have the same treatment for their primary raw materials.
Source: Ghana News Agency