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Nigeria Requires $262 Billion Investment To Achieve 30,000MW Electricity Target – Minister 

Aminat Gusanu

During an oil and gas conference in Lagos, Minister of Power, Adebayo Adelabu, emphasized the necessity of a substantial $262 billion investment in the power sector to meet the government’s ambitious goal of generating 30,000 megawatts (MW) of electricity by 2030.

Adelabu pointed out that the achievement of this target is threatened by the current state of power sector infrastructure, which experts argue is insufficient to effectively generate the required electricity for the country.

Furthermore, he highlighted a vital component of the project’s objectives, which is a significant plan to have renewable energy constitute 30 percent of the energy mix by 2030.

Emmanuel Nosike, the Director of the Transmission Services Department at the Ministry of Power, representing the minister, noted that Nigeria currently has a low power generation capacity of about 5,625MW, transmission capacity of 8,500MW, and a distribution capacity of 8,425MVA. 

These figures are far from sufficient to reach the targeted power generation of 20,000MW in the short term.

Adelabu expressed his concern over multiple challenges in the power sector, including insufficient generation capacity, transmission line failures, vandalism of power infrastructure, high frequency due to low power demand, and aging infrastructure.

Insufficient power generation was attributed to outdated power plants, inadequate investment in new generation infrastructure, and excessive reliance on fossil fuels like gas/steam and diesel.

The interruptions in electricity supply were linked to sudden outages in the transmission lines, often due to overloading, overheating of insulation, and faulty substation equipment.

 Vandalism of power infrastructure, particularly due to insufficient surveillance and security, was identified as a significant challenge.

High frequency, or over-generation, occurred when power supply exceeded the grid’s demand, leading to overloading of generators and transformers, loss of synchronization, and frequency instability.

Aging infrastructure was noted as a source of increased failure rates and reduced reliability without proper maintenance and upgrades.

Adelabu stressed that these issues have far-reaching consequences on Nigeria’s development and could deter potential investors.

To address these challenges, he called for collaboration between the government and the private sector to develop a strategic plan to modernize and upgrade the electricity transmission infrastructure, realizing the benefits of privatizing the power sector.

Adelabu also highlighted the importance of the recently signed Electricity Act 2023, which allows states, companies, and individuals to generate, transmit, and distribute electricity. 

He warned that the government would no longer provide sovereign guarantees to investors, emphasizing the need for accountability and responsibility in electricity projects.

He suggested encouraging contract financing directly between investors and relevant organizations, fostering a more proactive approach to ensure project success and sustainability.

“In a similar vein, Adelabu stressed the importance of encouraging contract financing directly between investors and relevant organizations, fostering a more proactive approach to ensure project success and sustainability. ‘Contract financing should be encouraged. 

The contract financing should be between the investor and the organization. 

For instance, if somebody wants to invest in the transmission of electricity today with the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), it should be between the investor and the TCN,’ he said.”

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