Government has received 4 000 megawatts of commitment in the hydro, wind, solar and heavy diesel oil from various independent power producers (IPPs) that so far have signed memorandum of understanding (MoU), that might lead to power purchasing agreements (PPAs).
Minister of Energy, Natural Resources and Mining Bright Msaka said he hoped following the signing of the MoUs, the first solar IPP should start operations by June next year.
“Our plans and power generation infrastructure takes different times depending upon technology; the solar ones are easy to make as they only have a year to make, so if we start solar power plans sometimes in the course of this year, you will be assured that by the course of mid next year, we will have all that power on board.
“The hydro and coal power plants take longer but we are moving in that direction. By the time we get to five years, there is going to be a huge difference in our generation capacity,” he said.
On pricing, Msaka said government wants to ensure that it gets power at optimum prices.
“We certainly must have power and power must cost us much, but we are not going to get that power at excessive price. So we are negotiating so that the power that Malawians can access is competitive,” he said.
Deputy director in the Department of Energy, Joseph Kalowekamo said in a recent interview government continues to receive many of proposals from unsolicited IPPs.
“We are receiving a lot of proposals, that is why we have decided to develop a road map, which is now in draft form, to guide the IPPs,” he said. n