- Raising Power Transmission Capacity
Documents obtained from the Transmission Company of Nigeria showed that the government-owned power company has within the last two years raised its transmission capacity by about 2,352.5 megawatts. Chineme Okafor, writes the implications of this feat to Nigeria’s power sector
Until recently, the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) was frequently ridiculed as the feeblest link in Nigeria’s privatised electricity market by key stakeholders in the market.
From the power generation companies (Gencos) who complained bitterly about reported inability of the TCN to take all the power they produced, to the electricity distribution companies (Discos) who pointed at the TCN for most things that go wrong with their delivery of electricity services to Nigerians, the TCN became a common whipping dog for the sector and needed to adjust its operations and services quickly.
However, with the expiration of the management contract, the government had with Canadian power firm – Manitoba Hydro International, and subsequent appointment of a new head for TCN, Mr. Usman Mohammed, who was reportedly recruited from the African Development Bank (AfDB), the company somewhat turned the corners on its operation.
Although stakeholders doubted the claims of the TCN that it had begun to upgrade the national grid through a scheme – the Transmission Rehabilitation and Expansion Programme (TREP) – initiated to help it expand its wheeling capacity to 20,000MW by 2021, using funds from the federal budget; donor and multilateral funding agencies, THISDAY however obtained from it documents which suggested it had upgraded and installed transmission equipment that have raised its capacity by 2,352.5MW between 2017 and early 2019.
Grid expansion efforts
From the documents, it was gathered that in 2017, the TCN added 80 mega volt amp (MVA) to its existing 180MVA high-end transmission substation located in Benin South, and from which 64MW of electricity was added to what it can deliver to the Benin; another 100MVA was added to its sub-station in Alimosho part of Lagos to upgrade it to 230MVA and add 80MW to what it can supply to Eko Disco; 60MVA was equally added an existing 160MVA substation in Ajah to upgrade its capacity to 220MVA and supply to Eko Disco by 48MW. Also, in Ejigbo, it said it would complete the addition of 100MVA to an 130MVA to raise the capacity of the substation to 230MVA and supply to Ikeja Disco by 32MW.
Going further, the documents disclosed that a 60MVA transformer capacity was added to an existing 37.5MVA capacity substation in Funtua to raise its overall capacity to 97.5MVA and supply to Kano Disco by 48MW; 40MVA added to a 100MVA substation in Zaria to raise capacity to 140MVA and supply to Kaduna Disco by 32MW; 60MVA to a 45MVA substation in Oji River to upgrade its capacity to 105MVA and supply to Enugu Disco by 48MW; 40MVA to a 28MVA substation in Mayo Belwa to raise its capacity to 68MVA and supply to Yola Disco by 32MW; as well as a new 120MVA installed at Kukwaba area of Abuja to add 96MW to the amount of electricity it can supply to Abuja Disco.
Also, in the Afam area of Rivers, it reportedly installed a 150MVA transformer to add 120MW of electricity to its volume to Port Harcourt Disco; 60MVA to upgrade Hadejia sub-station to 82.5MVA and supply to Kaduna Disco; 40MVA mobile transformer in Damboa part of Bornu; 60MVA to upgrade Keffi substation to 90MVA and improve supply to Abuja Disco by 48MW; 120MVA installed in Katampe part of Abuja to raise supply to the Disco by 80MW; 60MVA added to raise the capacity of Uyo substation to 180MVA as well as supplies to Port Harcourt Disco; 40MVA in Umuahia to raise existing capacity to 120MVA and supply by 96MW; 60MVA added to Aba to raise supply by 48MW; as well as 100MVA added to Apo in Abuja to raise supply to the Disco by 80MW.
Continuing in Gombe, the TCN also said it added 30MVA, as well as 60MVA in Bauchi. In Bida area of Niger, it said it added 60MVA to raise supply to Abuja Disco by 48MW; while in Suleja and Abeokuta, it added 120MVA and 60MVA to raise supply by 96MW respectively.
Again, it revealed that it upgraded the capacity of the Molai to 210MVA and supply to Yola Disco by 120MW; Illashe to 130MVA and 24MW; Awka to 60MVA and 16.5MW; while Mando to 690MVA and 552MW; just as a greenfield transmission substation was built at New Kano with a capacity of 420MVA and additional 336MW for Kano Disco to take to consumers under its network.
Dangote Fertiliser Plant to Commence Shipment of Urea in March 2021
Dangote to Sells Petrol in Naira, Plans to Commence Urea Shipment in March 2021
The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has said Dangote Fertiliser Plant will commence shipment of Urea in March 2021.
The CBN governor disclosed this during an inspection tour of the sites of Dangote Refinery, Petrochemicals Complex Fertiliser Plant and Subsea Gas Pipeline at Ibeju Lekki, Lagos on Saturday.
Emefiele further stated that Dangote Refinery would sell refined petroleum products in Naira when it starts production.
This he said would save the country from spending 41 percent of the nation’s foreign exchange on importation of petroleum products yearly.
“Based on agreement and discussions with the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and the oil companies, the Dangote Refinery can buy its crude in naira, refine it, and produce it for Nigerians’ use in naira,” Mr Emefiele said.
“That is the element where foreign exchange is saved for the country becomes very clear. We are also very optimistic that by refining this product here in Nigeria, all those costs associated with either demurrage from import, costs associated with freight will be totally eliminated.”
Emefiele explained that this will make the price of Nigeria’s petroleum products affordable and cheaper in naira.
“If we are lucky that what the refinery produces is more than we need locally you will see Nigerian businessmen buying small vessels to take them to our West African neighbours to sell to them in naira.
“This will increase our volume in naira and help to push it into the Economic Community of West African States as a currency,” Mr Emefiele said.
UK Budget 2021: Will Sunak’s Budget Run Into Unintended Consequences?
Rishi Sunak’s Budget will encourage higher earners to consider their “international financial options” and will drive businesses away from the UK, warns the CEO of one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory and fintech organizations.
The warning from Nigel Green, chief executive and founder of deVere Group, comes as the Chancellor delivered his 2021 Budget in the House of Commons, his second since he took on the role.
Mr Green says: “The Chancellor has got an extraordinarily difficult hand to play as he tries to stem the economic damage caused by the pandemic, support jobs and businesses and, crucially, rebuild the public finances.
“Whilst Mr Sunak is being hailed a hero for the continued and unprecedented levels of support, it should also be remembered that he is – in a stealth move – dragging more people firmly into the tax net.
“He is raising taxes under the radar.
“Yes, there is no income tax rise. However, he is freezing personal tax thresholds, meaning as incomes rise and thresholds don’t, he is able to raise money by fiscal drag.”
Earlier this week, the deVere CEO noted: “Those most impacted by this stealth move will be looking at the financial planning options available to them, including international options, in order to grow and protect their wealth.”
Rishi Sunak also confirmed that corporation tax will increase to 25% from 2023, up from the current level of 19%.
Of this tax hike, Mr Green goes on to say: “Lower corporation tax helps job and wealth-creating business to survive and thrive. It also helps attract business to move and invest in the country.
“Instead of increasing taxes, Mr Sunak should have relentlessly focussed on growth and stimulus policies for businesses. This would have been of greater help to firms, the economy, jobs and, ultimately, the Treasury’s coffers.”
He adds: “Again, this corporation tax hike is likely to serve as a prompt for businesses to consider their overseas financial options.”
The deVere CEO concludes: “The Chancellor had to perform a tough juggling act. But stealthily dragging more people into the tax net and raising corporation tax might have negative, unintended consequences for the Treasury’s bottom line.”
Electricity Consumers Get 611,231 Meters Under MAP Scheme
Electricity Consumers Get 611,231 Meters Under MAP Scheme
A total of 611,231 meters have been deployed as at January 31, 2021 under the Meter Asset Provider initiative since its full operation despite the COVID-19 pandemic and other extraneous factors, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission has said.
NERC disclosed this in a consultation paper on the review of the MAP Regulations.
The proposed review of the MAP scheme is coming nearly four months after the Federal Government launched a new initiative called National Mass Metering Programme aimed at distributing six million meters to consumers free of charge.
“The existence of a huge metering gap and the need to ensure successful implementation of the MYTO 2020 Service-Based Tariff resulted in the approval of the NMMP, a policy of the Federal Government anchored on the provision of long-term low interest financing to the Discos,” NERC said.
The commission had in March 2018 approved the MAP Regulations with the aim of fast-tracking the closure of the metering gap in the sector through the engagement of third-party investors (called meter asset providers) for the financing, procurement, supply, installation and maintenance of meters.
It set a target of providing meters to all customers within three years, and directed the Discos and the approved MAPs to commence the rollout of meters not later than May 1, 2019.
But in February 2020, NERC said several constraints, including changes in fiscal policy and the limited availability of long-term funding, had led to limited success in meter rollout.
NERC, in the consultation paper, highlighted three proposed options for metering implementation going forward.
The first option is to allow the implementation of both the NMMP and MAP metering frameworks to run concurrently; the second is to continue with the current MAP framework with meters procured under the NMMP supplied only through MAPs (by being off-takers from the local manufacturers/assemblers).
The third option is to wind down the MAP framework and allow the Discos to procure meters directly from local manufacturers/assemblers (or as procured by the World Bank), and enter into new contracts for the installation and maintenance of such meters.
“Customers who choose not to wait to receive meters based on the deployment schedule of the NMMP shall continue to have the option of making upfront payments for meters which will be installed within a maximum period of 10 working days,” NERC said.
The regulator said such customers would be refunded by the Discos through energy credits, adding that there would be no option for meter acquisition through the payment of a monthly meter service charge.
“Where meters have already been deployed under the meter service charge option, Discos shall make one-off repayment to affected customers and associated MAPs. Such meters shall be recognised in the rate base of the Discos,” it added.
NERC urged stakeholders to provide comments, objections, and representations on the proposed amendments within 21 days of the publication of the consultation paper.
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