Hope for Improved Electricity in Guinea

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Alpha Conde, President of Guinea

African Development Bank board approves $16.66 million financial package to support the rehabilitation and extension of Guinea’s Electricity Network

GUINEA’S Electricity Network Rehabilitation and Extension Project, PREREC2, is to get a loan and a grant totaling $16.66 million from the African Development Bank, AfDB. The fund was approved by the AfDB board on Wednesday, September 11, in Tunis, Tunisia. The project will help to improve governance and commercial management of Guinea Electricity company, EDG, to support the government in reforming the sub-sector and to extend the electricity distribution network to 12 neighbourhoods in the Ratoma and Matoto municipality in Conakry. It is a follow-up to PREREC1 under completion in 30 other neighbourhoods of the same municipalities that has significantly improved the quality of electricity supplied to consumers.

The specific objectives are to connect 40,000 subscribers with the installation of prepayment meters, reduce the rate of overall losses in the project area from 49 percent to 15 percent, strengthen financial management of Guinea Electricity company, EDG, by instituting financial control and financial balancing; and improving commercial management of EDG by increasing the billing rate from 51 percent to 85 percent and the collection rate from 80 percent to 95 in the project area.

The project is in line with pillars iii and iv of Guinea’s Third Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper, PRSP III, for 2013-2015 which focus on governance and institutional and human capacity building, acceleration, diversification and sustainable growth, development of infrastructure to support growth, and improving access to basic social services and household resilience of which one of the sub-pillars is “improving access to energy services in urban and suburban areas.”

The bank’s expertise in defining and implementing similar projects in countries and in the sub-region as well as consultations with international partners have been instrumental in designing the project. Special emphasis is placed on improving governance and building institutional and human capacity to ensure, in a sustainable manner, the viability of infrastructure. The bank’s intervention will also help raise funds from other technical and financial partners of the country.

The project area covers the municipalities of Ratoma and Matoto with an estimated population of 1.4 million, of which 52.1 percent are women. There are about 2,300 handicraft and very small enterprises, VSEs, some 40 factories and 141 active women’s associations. The direct beneficiaries are the 40,000 subscribers made up of households, women’s associations and handicraft, commercial and industrial VSEs that will be connected to the new network. The main expected outputs of the project by the target group are having access to quality electricity service and improving the environment to become more suitable for the development of socio-economic activities.

The total project cost is estimated at $32.8 million. It is co-funded by the Islamic Development Bank, IDB, and the Guinean government. The project will be implemented from 2013-2017.

— Sep. 20, 2013 @ 01:00 GMT

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