What you need to know:
- Data from the East African Power Pool indicates that EAC shares a total of 90,000 megawatts with a consumption surplus of more than 40,000 megawatts
Energy Minister Ruth Nankabirwa has said East Africa will by the end of 2024 have established the East African Electricity Regulatory Board, which will enable easy sale of power across the region.
Data from the East African Power Pool indicates that EAC shares a total of 90,000 megawatts with a consumption surplus of more than 40,000 megawatts.
Speaking during the East African Power Pool conference in Kampala, Ms Nankabirwa said by the end of 2024 East Africa, as a region, will start trading between member states, which will override the current bilateral power sales agreements.
“At the East African level, we agreed to have an independent regulatory board. Today, we have given them a go head to make sure that the board is …. ratified,” she said, noting that power generation costs money, which calls for finding a market for the power that is not consumed.
The Board will enable countries such as Uganda, which has excess power, to easily sell power to invest in the distribution network.
“Any power that is generated and not utilised is deemed energy, which you have to pay. Instead of waiting for the money and then we establish distribution networks, we would rather sell it to get money to invest in the distribution networks,” Ms Nankabirwa said.
Uganda, according to the Electricity Regulatory Authority, as of December 2021, had installed electricity capacity of 1,346 megawatts with demand at 800 megawatts, which leaves a surplus of 546 megawatts.
Ms Nankabirwa noted that the Board will also ease sell of power to border towns, such as Elegu, Kaya, Nimule and Mirama hills, many of which have insufficient supply.
Speaking at the same event, Mr Joshua Karamagi, the Uganda Electricity Transmission Company Limited managing director, said Uganda is currently doing cross-border electricity sale under bilateral arrangements with Kenya, and lately to parts of South Sudan.
“But that notwithstanding, we want to go a step further and pool power the way you see the stock exchange. This means that the excess power will be put to this market, it will be in such a way that people sign agreements to be able to trade on the East African Power Pool,” he said.
Meet to discuss
According to Mr Karamagi, in September UETCL and other stakeholders will meet to discuss the issue of interconnection between East Africa member countries through which electricity will be pooled.