Development of 300MW solar plant in Nigeria to begin in earnest
The Federal Government of Nigeria has finalized signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with a consortium of independent power producers (IPPs) for the construction of a 300MW solar plant in Nigeria.
South Africa’s Volt Renewables and Nigeria’s Nigus Greenergy have formed the consortium whereby an agreement worth US$600m of investment towards the construction of the solar plant in Nigeria has been concluded. The signed agreement has been facilitated by the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission.
LTi ReEnergy, a German based company will be responsible for supplying to the projects its central inverters which are already under development and are expected to be completed by next year.
The 300MW solar projects will include three 100MW solar plants constructed in different States. One of the solar plant in Nigeria will be located at Kano in Kano State, Birnin in Kebbi State, and the other plant will be developed in the northern region of Nigeria in Yola located in Andamawa State. On completion the plant is expected to contribute 10% of the country’s current generation capacity.
However, earlier this month the Nigeria’s National Bulk Electricity Trader (NBET) signed an agreement for the development of the 975MW solar PV plant under the Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs). The agreement was sealed among the 12 separate solar developers who currently working on PV projects in the country.
Solar energy is the ideal solution
According to the consortium partners, solar energy is the ideal solution for the recommended states which have been described to possess strong solar resources given that the power plants are capable of being commissioned quickly on a distributed basis, making a great difference to the country’s economy.
Nathan Schmidt, from Volt Renewables said that the project represents the realization of the much-needed capacity for the Nigerian electricity grid. Schmidt added the signing of the MoU potrays a significant start aimed at improvement the local communities in the mentioned regions.
LTi ReEnergy is looking forward to partner with local companies in terms of logistics model that includes shipping the integral part of its central inverters from its manufacturing base in Germany and at the same time sourcing the remaining components required to build a central inverter from recognized localization partners.
Currently, Nigeria only has about 4GW of power capacity across the nation that is made up of over 173 million people. In the real sense majority of the citizens go without power, or at least reliable electricity connection on regularly basis. However, responding the country’s power challenges, PV has long been viewed as the perfect solution to this severe shortfall, however, the lack of foreign currency in the country and the continued devaluation of the naira (Nigeria’s currency) makes the foreign investment unattractive at best and risky at worst in the Nigeria market.