By Musa Adamu
Minister of power, works and housing, Babatunde Fashola, has clarified that the Electricity Power Sector Reform Act, 2005, (EPSRA) provides for three classes of power to buy power directly from Generation Companies (GenCos).
According to him, the Act provides that Generation Companies could be sell power to the bulk trader (NBET), the Distribution Companies or the eligible customer.
He however said contrary to the larger window provided in the Act however, sale was only being to one of the classes which was the Bulk Trader.
The minister made this clarification when he made the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN).
He said the meeting was meant open the window for sales to the Eligible Customer (EC).
He said there was no better time to explore the option of sale to the EC than now when there was the inventory of unsold power, with the clear promise of more to come.
He restated that the market must open to all willing buyers.
He said: “This access to power, for manufacturing and production, is the big bridge towards diversification of the Economy.”
Clarifying further on why the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) had to declare the Eligible Customer Policy, he said the nation was expecting about 2000mw of unsold inventory.
He said though, the DisCos had also increased their load taking capacity to 5,0000mw, there would be a gap of 2,000mw unsold inventory.
Assuring that NERC had already made the rules to guide the implementation of EC policy, he said the new policy would ensure that bulk power consumers would purchase power from GenCos directly, even when the business of DisCos was protected.
The nation is expecting more power from Azura, 459 MW; Afam III, 240 MW, Kaduna,215 MW, and a host of others this year.
Against this backdrop, the minister said the unsold and increasing inventory was what the meeting offers to manufacturers as their critical Raw Material to reduce their cost of production.