Header Ads

Sowom Hydro Project to be PNG Government's Priority : Maru

 High cost of power is a major hinderance to trade and investment in Papua New Guinea (PNG), says Minister for Trade and Investment,  Richard Maru.

 PNG’s electricity sector is unreliable, expensive and has very low access, making the country one of the least electrified countries in the world with only 13% of the population having access to electricity.

“We continue to rely on the expensive diesel generators when we have vast cheaper and cleaner energy options available- the rivers (for hydro projects) and the sun (for solar farms),” said Minister Maru.

Minister Maru raised this concern after meeting with a team from the Snowy Mountains Engineering Corporation (SMEC) this morning where they discussed about a feasibility study into the Sowom Hydro Project in East Sepik Province. SMEC has done an initial high-level feasibility study into the potential of the hydro project along the Sowom River in 2014.

“The Marape-Rosso Government is keen to have a full feasibility study done on the viability of one or two hydro projects along the Sowom River,” said Minister Maru.

Currently, the requirement for electricity in the East Sepik Province is about 10 megawatts of power and this is provided by diesel generators in Wewak and in Maprik. 

“It is difficult to attract major investment projects in East Sepik Province without reliable and cheaper power. The Greater Sepik Region cannot continue to depend on expensive diesel generators for electricity,” said Minister Maru.

Minister Maru requested SMEC to put together a proposal and a costing to do a full feasibility study into the Sowom Hydro Project. He wants the Feasibility Study to be completed before the year ends. 

“I have briefed the Governor of East Sepik Province on this study, and he is very supportive. The availability of cheap and reliable electricity is one of the highest challenges for the entire Greater Sepik Region which must be solved before the region can market itself as a serious investment destination, along with other provinces like Manus, Gulf, West Sepik and New Ireland who continue to depend on very expensive diesel-fired generators. A combination of hydro, solar energy and gas-fired electricity supply is the way to go for these provinces,” said Minister Maru.

Minister Maru said he will be working very closely with the leaders from other provinces and districts right around the country to develop cheaper and reliable electricity supply to fuel economy growth and provide cheaper and more accessible electricity to the bulk of the people in the country.

“This will also be a major business opportunity to the landowners of the lands where such projects will be located in,” he said.

Next : PNG Diplomat to be recalled and terminated for Wife assault in Taipei Restaurant, Taiwan

No comments

Thank you for visiting this web page. We would like to hear from you, feel free to comment below.

Powered by Blogger.