The governments of Benin and Togo on Monday called for an increase in the amount of electricity, which their countries receive from Nigeria.
They specifically requested the Nigerian electricity supply industry to increase the amount of power sent to them from 200 megawatts to 300MW.
Speaking through the Community Electric du Benin, the countries urged the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission to intervene in the matter, but NERC made it clear to them that they would pay stipulated commercial rates for the power from Nigeria.
The CEB, known in English as the Electricity Community of Benin, is an international organisation co-owned by the governments of Benin and Togo. It is in charge of developing electricity infrastructure in both countries, which are strongly dependent on energy imports from Ghana and Nigeria.
NERC said in a statement that it told the four-man delegation from the CEB that the governments of Benin and Togo should be ready to pay commercial rates for electricity supplied to them by Nigeria.
Speaking with the CEB team, the Transmission Service Provider and Independent System Operator for the Republics of Togo and Benin, the NERC Chairman, Dr. Sam Amadi, was quoted as saying, “The ongoing reform in the Nigeria electricity industry will not jeopardise international relations and strategic interests of Nigeria.”
The delegation, the statement said, was in Nigeria to find out the implication of the privatisation of the remaining government-owned power plants under the National Integrated Power Project and how it would affect the allocation of 200MW of electricity, which the two nations were receiving from Nigeria.
NERC stated in the statement, “They also made a case for an increase in allocation from 200MW to 300MW. Nigeria currently supplies 300MW to Togo, Benin and Niger Republic, out of which the CEB countries get 200MW of power supply with the balance of 100MW given to Niger Republic.”
“You need to sign a power purchase agreement with the Nigeria Electricity Bulk Trader Plc and be up to date in your payment for electricity received as the market will be entirely private-sector-driven by the time the NIPP plants are sold,” Amadi was quoted as telling the delegation.
He explained that such financial commitment and responsibility might be an issue when considering their request for additional capacity.
The CEB team was told that the request would be deliberated at the October edition of the industry stakeholders’ meeting and that decisions reached would be communicated to them.