World Bank grant to be used for work at 75-MW Garafiri hydropower plant

CONAKRY, Guinea 6/7/12 (PennWell) — Guinea’s 75-MW Garafiri hydroelectric plant will benefit from a US$18.3 million International Development Association Grant awarded by the World Bank, has learned.

The IDA grant will be added to Guinea’s Electricity Sector Efficiency Improvement Project (PAESE), which has been previously awarded financing of $7.2 million from the World Bank and $4.5 million from the Global Environment Facility.

IDA’s grant will primarily be used to purchase distribution equipment and meters for the Kaloum area in downtown Conakry and spare parts for the Garafiri hydropower facility.

The money will also allow the Guinean Electricity Company (EDG) to improve its commercial management and energy savings pilot program.

“The aim of the PAESE is to support the efforts of the Guinean government to improve the technical, commercial and operational efficiency of the electricity sector through the funding of critical investments as well as capacity building,” says World Bank Senior Energy Economist Moez Cherif. “This should have an impact on the financial viability of the sector and the quality of services provided.”

Cherif says the purpose of the investment is eliminating some of Guinea’s energy deficit. “The electricity sector in Guinea faces serious challenges stemming mainly from the wide gap between supply and demand, resulting from a lack of maintenance and investment in the electricity infrastructure over many years,” Cherif says.

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