By Bester Kayaye
Malawi’s Minister of Energy Ibrahim Matola has cautioned Independent Power Producers (IPP) over “unrealistic delays in implementing various power generation projects despite being given a consent to execute the projects.”
Matola made the caution at the launch of the Malawi Power Industry Compendium, which exhibits potential power generation projects in Malawi, by Power Market Limited (PML).
The Minister said there are some power purchase agreements signed as early as 2019 whose respective projects are yet to start.
Matola said: “I wish to express my sadness with the delays that some IPPs are making once given a go ahead to develop a power project. It does not make sense to hold on to agreements at the expense of the country that desperately needs electricity.”
“Therefore, am asking PML to review all these idle Power Purchase Agreements and find a way of making the holders accountable and responsible. Otherwise, it will be good for the investors to relinquish the agreements so that other potential investors are allowed to develop the sites.”
Commenting on the Compendium, Matola emphasized that the compendium has been developed at the right time when the country is in immense power crisis which is weighing on the development of key growth sectors for Malawi’s economy.
He explained that the compendium will provide the much needed information on key projects to be pursued and the incentives that government is providing to the investors.
Matola said: “There has been a continued imbalance between electricity demand and supply due to low generation capacity. Similarly, the independent power producers have not satisfactorily been able to come online as anticipated.”
“The successful implementation of the projects in the Compendium will assist in achieving energy self-sufficiency for sustainable development. I am aware of the directive that was given by the President to deliver 1,000 megawatts by 2025. I have confidence that together, we will achieve this target and even more.”
Meanwhile, government has reviewed the Independent Power Producers Framework in a quest to align it to the recent developments and to ensure speedy implementation of energy generation projects.