Mr. Kandeh Yumkella
The Director-General of United Nations Industrial Organisation (UNIDO), Mr. Kandeh Yumkella, is committed to pumping billions of dollars into Nigeria’s energy sector given the enabling environment and laws.
Yumkella said this at the launch of Sustainable Energy for All (SE4ALL) organised by the Ministry of Power and UN system in Nigeria.
He said sustainable energy could not be realised by the government alone unless private investors and organisations such as UNIDO, EU, African Development Bank and other stakeholders partnered with it.
“What we will give Nigeria are instruments and capital,’’ he said, adding, “We are also mobilising how to access these capital, namely by having feasibility studies design, and public policy because these are long-time investment.
“We do not want a situation whereby somebody will bring say five billion dollars and, suddenly, within two years or so there is a policy change or government changes.’’
According to him, Ghana and South Africa have attracted a lot of funds from these world financial bodies and African Development Bank to solve their energy challenges.
Yumkella, who put Nigeria’s current power generation at 4,500 megawatts, said the country would need 20,000 megawatts in another 20 years, hence the need for both private and international banks to assist.
He said that the international agencies would be investing their monies in the nation’s power sector purely on business terms and profit-making and not for aid.
Yumkella called on the government to avail itself of the opportunities offered by international investors by designing good projects, passing laws to reform the power sector as well as provide good tariff for investors.
Earlier, Gov. Martin Elechi of Ebonyi, who spoke on behalf of the 36 state governors, said there were two challenges preventing Nigeria from achieving sustainable development.
He said the challenges were irregular power supply and insufficient food production for the teeming population, adding that by surmounting them the country would be able to attain industrial growth.
Mr. Daouda Toure, Resident Coordinator, UN System, Nigeria, said the organisation had set December this year as the year for sustainable energy for all.
He said the UN Secretary-General Mr. Ban Ki-moon had launched the programme and had started mobilising people and resources to actualise the goal.