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23.10.2008 General News

New Body To Handle Power Transmission

By Our Reporter -

A new entity, Ghana Grid Company (GRIDCO), has been formed to replace the transmission department of the Volta River Authority (VRA), Energy Minister, Felix Owusu-Adjapong, announced in Accra yesterday.

Speaking at his ministry's turn at the Meet-the-Press series, he said the move formed part of the institutional reforms of the power sector to create a level playing field for all entities involved in the generation of electricity.

He said government was providing the necessary financial and material support for GRIDCO to play its role effectively, adding that a core staff of 635 personnel had been ceded from the VRA to the new company.

Mr Owusu-Adjapong said GRIDCO would not be involved in the distribution of electricity but rather be in charge of the transmission.

This, he explained, was due to the private sector participation in the energy sector. It would therefore not be fair to the rest if VRA produced and transmitted power at the same time.

The minister said government was looking at developing other indigenous sources of energy, including renewable energy such as solar, wind and biofuels.

“A major challenge, however, is the higher cost of energy sources owing to the current state of their technology,” he stated.

The Ministry of Energy, through the Energy Commission, is engaging Ghanaian engineers and scientists to cooperate with other experts to make the cost of these technologies competitive, particularly for electricity generation.

“With the right incentives and regulations, I believe the use of renewable energy will be enhanced,” he said.

In view of advanced technologies, he said nuclear energy was becoming a popular option for power generation worldwide and Mr Owusu-Adjapong said the government intended to explore this option in the medium term.

Consequently, he said the President had established a National Committee on Nuclear Energy headed by Professor Daniel Adzei Bekoe to coordinate the preparation of a road map towards the development of nuclear energy generation by 2018 whose report has been approved by cabinet for implementation.