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Business News of Mon, 27 Feb 20174

Power supply expected to stabilize in 48hours - Energy Ministry

The Energy Ministry has assured consumers of stable power supply in 48hours following more than four weeks of inconsistent service.

Technical advisor at the Ministry, Michael Opam, told JOY FM's Super Morning Show Monday that 774MW is to be fed into the national grid after more than 650MW went off beginning last month.

The 650MW was lost because of maintenance on the Western corridor power plants which includes TACO, TICO and AMERI plants.

The Western corridor plants now contributes only 100MW, he said.

"Normally, we would need about 300mw in the western corridor to ensure stability...so with only 100 TIC0 available we had a problem on our hands".

The delay in completion of maintenance works on the Ghana national gas pipeline by some six days further exacerbated the problem. The timetable for the maintenance was from 3rd to 20th February but it shifted to February 26.

The pipeline supplies crucial gas to the Western corridor plants and repair works cut off supplies resulting in the loss of 650 MW.

In response to the shortfall, government sent a delegation to Ivory Coast to request for between 150 to 200MW. The supply from Eastern border neighbour was generally good but there were a 'few hiccups', Mr. Michael Opam noted.

Ivory Coast has proven to be a 'friend-indeed' during Ghana' power crisis,

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The Technical advisor said the works on the gas pipeline was completed last Sunday and has resulted in 103MW power supply from AMERI which has a 230 generation capacity.

"By the close of day (Monday), the rest of the AMERI units will come on," Mr. Opam said.

For power plants in the Western corridor that rely on Light Crude Oil (LCO), government has supplies to last 40 days which means plants like TICO and CENIT can contribute 150MW and 200MW respectively.

Sunon Asogli power plants which mainly runs on gas from Nigeria has had some of its installations re-configured to run on available LCO. The re-configured plant can contribute 120MW.

"The power supply system has stabilised...I can assure you there will be no load shedding (today)".

Despite efforts to address load shedding, Mr. Opam said some power cuts in parts of the Greater Accra, Ashanti and Central regions are due to recent rainstorms. He said these are 'localised outages'.

He expressed the hope that the ministry sustains the improvements it has made in the power supplies. He, however, hinted about an 'important' financial challenge. Ghana owes its 'friend-in-deed' Ivory Coast $50million.

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