Parliamentary Committee on Natural Resources and Climate Change chairperson Welani Chilenga has bemoaned low energy sources in the Northern Region, saying it was depriving government of potential revenue.
In an interview on Tuesday, he said lack of energy investment also prevented the establishment of companies in the region.
Chilenga, who is also Chitipa South legislator, said: “Paladin, for instance, who were operating Kayelekera Uranium Mine in Karonga, were using diesel generators.
“So, lack of energy is affecting investment in the region as we can’t have enough companies investing there, which is depriving the youth of employment.”
He said despite demand for electricity in Chitipa and Karonga, the two districts are only supplied with three megawatts partly due to infrastructure challenges.
Ministry of Energy spokesperson Upile Kamoto-Lali said government has identified various power-generating resources in the Northern Region and other areas across the country.
“Depending on the resource availability of an area, the government recommends the best technology of power generation that can be established,” she said.
Kamoto-Lali said they also look at the Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) infrastructure such as substation and transmission lines so that it feeds into the national grid.
She said: “Feasibility studies the government has carried out show that the Northern Region is suitable for power generation from hydro, geothermal, gas and wind.
“So, we have mapped and we have established projects that can be carried out there that will produce a lot of power. What needs to follow is just to identify financing for these projects.”
Figures from Escom show that about 11 percent of the country’s population is connected to the national electricity grid.