About 300 industrial clusters, including markets, shopping malls, plazas, and complexes have been earmarked across the country for electrification under the Rural Electrification Agency (REA) Energising Economies Initiative (EEI).
The rural electrification agency disclosed this at a roundtable meeting with EEI private power developers in Abuja on Wednesday.
The agency said in a statement by its
Director of Promotions, Ayang Ogbe in Abuja that the EEI was a Federal Government initiative implemented to take electricity to economic clusters across the country.
“The focus of the EEI is to electrify economic clusters in Nigeria, which include markets, shopping plazas/complexes, and industrial clusters in line with the Federal Government’s goal of increasing electricity access,” Ogbe stated.
The REA, he said, was mandated to implement the initiative through technical assistance to private project developers whose responsibilities include identification and audit of economic clusters, facilitation of engagement with key stakeholders, and technical support for project development and operation.
“Over 300 clusters have been identified for electrification across the country in different phases. So far, over 12,000 shops are now receiving clean, safe, reliable and affordable electricity supply,” he stated.
The pilot phase of the Energising Economies Initiative, Ogbe said, saw the inauguration of the Sura Shopping Complex Independent Power Project in Lagos State, which provides electricity for 1,047 shops, as well as the Ariaria International Market (Independent Power Project), Aba, Abia State, powering over 4,000 shops.
“Also, inaugurated were over 6,000 energised shops at Sabon Gari market, Kano State, with more connections in the pipeline,” he said.
Also, the agency is currently discussing the prospects of identifying implementation gaps, improving service delivery and strengthening of the initiative to achieve the goal of providing reliable electricity in economic clusters narionwide.
Besides, the EEI developers, he said, were sufficiently represented at the roundtable, with representatives from Ariaria International Market Energy Solutions Limited, Solad Integrated Power Solutions Limited, Rensource Energy Limited and Green Village Electricity Projects Limited.
He said in the course of the discussions at the roundtable, the private developers outlined some setbacks hindering the efficient delivery of power to economic clusters.
The REA outlined the setbacks to include technical and legal solutions to customer bypass, funding constraints and gas unavailability.
Others include power shortage and system collapse due to system capacity, inadequate provision of metering, electricity vending system issues and challenges with customer service delivery.