Government has revealed that once the 600MW Karuma Power Plant is commissioned and fully utilized, the weighted generation tariff will reduce from the current US Cents 6.47/kWh (Shs243.43) to US Cents 5.34/kWh (Shs200.93), indicating a 17.65% reduction
According to Eng. Simon D’ujanga, the Minister of State for Energy, power distributors like Umeme and other distribution companies will spend Shs200.9m to buy one Gigawatt from the Uganda Electricity Generation Company LTD (UEGCL) as compared to the current Shs243.4m, which they are paying for the same amount.
The industrial sector has the largest demand for electricity (64.6%), followed by consumers with 24.2% and commercial at 11.16%
D’ujanga noted the target of 5 US Cents per unit of electricity has already been achieved during off-peak hours for extra-large consumers.
“This was possible following the conclusion of refinancing Bujagali Hydro Power Plant (tariff reduced from 10.1 US Cents to 8.3 US Cents),” he said
D’ujanga made these remarks, while launching the energy week at the Uganda Media Centre on Monday this week. The energy week will run between December, 1-4, 2020, under the theme: Energy and Minerals for Industrialization, Job Creation and shared prosperity
Uganda currently has a total installed generation capacity of 1,252MW, following the commissioning of the 183MW Isimba Power Plant last year.
“This generation capacity is expected to exceed 2,000MW by 2021 due to additional generation expected from Karuma (600 MW) and several small hydro power plants such as Kikagati (16MW), Nyamagasani I (15MW) and Nyamagasani II (5.9MW) and solar power plants. In the medium and long term,” he said adding,
“Government will develop the large and small hydro power projects including Ayago (840MW), Orianga (392MW), Kiba (400MW), Achwa I (42MW), geothermal resources is estimated to have electricity generation potential of 450MW, Nuclear, Solar and Wind, in pursuit of our vision 2040 goals,”
Meanwhile the minister took time to slap critics in the media who have been questioning why government is spending more in power “unwanted” power.
“You remember in 2015 when we ran out of power due to low generation capacity. It is like having a bus; it is better to have a 60 passenger bus even if you don’t have enough passengers than leaving some passengers on the roadside because of your low capacity,” he said.
He noted that the government has taken a keen interest to grow demand for electricity through the promotion of productive use of energy as well as the creation of industrial parks.
The Industrial parks according to Minister D’ujanga are projected to increase electricity demand by 1000 MW.
He noted that the high voltage lines to supply Iganga Industrial Park, Mukono Industrial Park, Kapeeka Industrial Park, Kampala Industrial and Business Park (KIBP) and the Mbale Industrial Park have been completed.
“To ensure that power generated is evacuated, Government is expanding the power transmission infrastructure through the construction of several high voltage transmission lines and associated substations,” he said adding,
“The transmission network currently stands at 2,989kms of high voltage lines, representing 1,008km of 220kV transmission lines and 1,946km of 132kV transmission lines and 35km of 66kV transmission line,”
He noted that the government is completing the Karuma-Kawanda 400KV High Voltage line to evacuate power for Karuma HPP.
On the issue of distribution, Hon. D;ujanga said that the distribution network have expanded to 14,923km of Medium Voltage (MV) lines and 20,933km of Low Voltage Lines (LV), bringing the total to 35,856km of distribution network.
During the FY2019/20, he said that the country added 1,710km of distribution lines (MV&LV) to the network.
“The national rural electrification programme has facilitated extension of the national grid by 2,550Km of Medium Voltage lines and 2,596Km of Low Voltage. A total of about 1,392km of Medium Voltage power lines and 1,482km of Low Voltage power lines are under implementation and are expected to be commissioned by the end of this FY2020/21. In addition, 2,500km of Medium Voltage lines have been surveyed in preparation for appraisal and future development,”
He noted that electricity has been extended to all District Headquarters (with the exception of Kaabong which is expected to be complete by December 2020).
“We have commenced on the electrification of Sub-county, Division and Town Council headquarters and works are on-going in 25 districts covering 570 sub county headquarters,”
Over1.5m households are now connected to the national grid electricity, according to the minister.
“Our target is to make sure that every household has access to electricity by 2030. We shall use on-grid connections as well as solar home systems and small isolated mini-grids to reach all Ugandans,”