France, through its development agency – the French Development Agency (AFD), has approved for the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), a total of $245 million financial package to undertake its expansion of Nigeria’s electricity grid at the northern ends of the country.
A statement from TCN’s General Manager, Public Affairs, Mrs. Ndidi Mbah, explained that the board of AFD approved the $245 million on December 20, 2018.
Mbah, stated that the funding would enable TCN undertake the Northern Corridor Project under its Transmission Rehabilitation and Expansion Program (TREP).
She noted that apart from the AFD’s $245 million financial package for the project, the European Union (EU) had earlier approved a grant of €25 million for the project.
According to her, the approval of the Northern Corridor Project by the board of AFD and European Union was a significant step towards establishing a modern electricity grid in Nigeria.
She noted that while the TREP sought to rehabilitate, stabilise and provide necessary transmission redundancy consistent with international standard in the form of N-1, as well as expand the national grid to take at least 20,000 megawatts (MW) of generated electricity soon, its implementation has attracted significant support from multilateral and bilateral donors such as the AFD; World Bank; African Development Bank (AfDB); and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
The Northern Corridor Project, she stated would form the backbone for the West African Power Pool (WAPP) north core which would connect Nigeria; Niger Republic; Benin Republic and Burkina Faso on 330 kilovolt (kV) Double Circuit (DC) transmission line.
“It is also expected to construct the Kainji-Birnin-Sokoto 330kV DC line, Katsina-Daura-Gwiwa-Jogana-Kura 330kV DC line and reconstruct one of the Shiroro-Kaduna 330kV Single Circuit transmission lines into 330kV quad line which will be the first of its kind in Nigeria.
“The project will construct 330/132/33kV substations in Sokoto, Daura and Jogana-Kano and 132/33kV substations at Birnin Gwari, Argungu and Lambata in Niger State and equally rehabilitate Jebba and Kainji switch yards to ensure adequate capacity to evacuate Mainstream’s expansion plans,” Mbah, explained.
Additionally, she said with the support of the Federal Ministry of Finance, the AFD was also assisting the TCN to construct the Sokoto-Kaura Namoda-Katsina 330kV DC line, which would lead to the closure of the 330kV loop and would cost $55 million.
She informed that the TCN has commenced preparation for the construction of the Sokoto-Kaura Namoda-Katsina line and 330/132/33kV substation project at Kaura Namoda.
“The project when completed will provide the necessary flexibility and redundancy as well as significantly improve bulk power supply to all the states in the Northwest and parts of the Northcentral states,” she added.
According to her, the AFD would be the first of TCN’s donor to support implementation of Greenfield transmission infrastructure in Nigeria. The project, Mba said would be implemented without delay.
She further explained that the implementation of the TREP was on track and that contracts for the construction of five transmission substations in Abuja and new Lafiya to Abuja 330kV transmission line also financed by AFD have all been signed.
The Northern corridor Project would enhance social economic development of the North-west by attracting investments in industries and commercial outfits to improve livelihoods in the regions.
Meanwhile, the TCN also disclosed that it has completed the installation and commissioning of a brand new 80 megavolts amp (MVA) capacity 132/33kV transmission substation in Daura and a new 60MVA-132/33kV power transformer in its Katsina substation.
It said the brand new Daura sub-station which comprise of two 40MVA power transformers with six 33kV feeders was built to resolve the power supply situation in Daura and environs.
Also, it noted that the new 60MVA power transformer with three 33kV feeders in its Katsina transmission substation has increased the stations transmission capacity from 120MVA to 180MVA, thus making it available for bulk electricity to be sent to the Kano electricity distribution company (Disco) for all its customers in Daura, Katsina and environs.