The Chairman of the Energy Commission (EC), Dr Kwame Ampofo, is calling for a diversification of the power sector to encompass alternative sources of power.
Dr Ampofo was speaking at the opening session of the maiden power conference, dubbed: “Powerelect Ghana 2016”, an international power, electrical and electronic expo in Accra yesterday.
The three-day conference is targeted at exploring business opportunities in power generation, renewable energy, solar power and electrical systems in Africa.
Meant to showcase the potential of the country’s power sector, the conference has brought together 100 exhibitors from nine countries, including Turkey, India, Egypt and Italy, and other international suppliers.
Also present at the opening session were government officials and regulatory executives, representatives of power producers, plant equipment producers and other stakeholders.
The participants will share ideas and knowledge on alternative power sources and how to integrate power systems in order to ensure power stability in the country.
Dr Ampofo urged investors to take advantage of the power sector policy on local content and local participation to ensure that the local economy played a pivotal role in building a robust power sector.
For his part, the Deputy Minister of Power, Mr Abu Jinapor, said partnership with the private sector was key to enhancing the power supply sector.
He called for collaboration among African countries to facilitate the roll out of integrated power systems and increase their power generation capacities to propel the continent’s socio-economic development.
“Statistics show that some 620 million people in Africa do not have access to electricity. The benefit Ghana derived from its partnership with Turkey in dealing with the energy crisis of last year is enormous. This can be replicated among African countries,” he said.
Mr Jinapor noted that a diversified energy mix, coupled with broader approaches, would create room for a cost-effective energy sector.
Local content and participation
The President of the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), Mr James Asare Adjei, said even though the country had taken a number of drastic measures to stabilise the power problem that spanned almost two years, more work ought to be done to consolidate the gains.
He called for increased participation of indigenous companies in the sector, even as efforts were made to attract foreign investors, saying that was the means by which the local economy would grow.
One of the organisers of “Powerelect”, Mr Jeane Joshua, urged African counties to increase investment in the power sector in order to meet demand.
He said poor infrastructure was the bane of the growth of African economies and urged countries in Africa to inject more resources into the power sector.