Abuja – Under President Obama’s landmark Power Africa initiative, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has recently launched a new assistance program that aims to improve power distribution performance and increase connections in Nigeria.
The two-year agreement will provide management consultation to three Nigerian distribution companies. The agreement will also advance major infrastructure investments and strengthen systems in the distribution companies.
U.S. Ambassador James F. Entwistle witnessed the signing between USAID partner Power Africa Transactions Reforms Program and the chief executives of the Abuja, Benin, and Eko distribution companies.
He said, “We believe that distribution companies are the starting point for improving the entire power sector value chain.” He added, “Through improving the performance of distribution companies, we will see increased electricity supply and access…our joint efforts will improve the lives of countless Nigerians and serve as a model for other African countries.”
Announced by President Obama in 2013, Power Africa is working with sub-Saharan African governments, the private sector, and other partners, including Nigeria to add more than 30,000 megawatts (MW) of cleaner, more efficient electricity generation capacity and 60 million new connections by 2030. The initiative has already helped financially close over 4,000 MW worth of transactions representing almost 14 percent of the initial 30,000 MW goal.
In Nigeria, Power Africa supports the strengthening of the energy sector through credit enhancement, grants, technical assistance, and investment promotion efforts. Power Africa is also working to mobilize affordable and long-term financing to support capital and operational expenditure requirements for successor generation and distribution companies to accelerate electricity market development.