Renewables in spotlight at PPP conference

The aim of the conference was to explore PPP investment opportunities in infrastructure and the provision of public services.

11 November 2019 | Energy

Renewable energy projects came under the spotlight at a Public Private Partnership conference held last week to discuss investment into potential projects in that sector.

The conference, which was facilitated by the ministry of finance, brought together potential investors to sell Namibia as a prospective hub for renewable energy production.

Namibia recently liberalised the energy sector with reforms to the single buyer model, allowing prospective energy producers to potentially bypass Nampower, the country's only bulk electricity supplier.

Speaking at the PPP conference, executive director in the ministry of finance Ericah Shafudah said there was great scope for investment in energy projects.

“There is great latitude of utility in promoting investment in renewable energy supply. The focus on energy and specifically, renewable energy is to contribute to the national objective of secure, but sustainable energy supply, thus plugging national energy supply gaps while securing affordable clean energy. In this respect, attention is called to investments in green mini-grids, green baseload and energy efficiency,” she said.

According to her, among such key investment opportunities was the energy sector, in particular renewable energy, given Namibia's strategic location and its relative comparative advantage for wind and solar power generation.

“Following the recent policy reforms to liberalise participation in the energy generation sphere through the initiative of modified single buyer model, which increasingly allow for independent power producers (IPPs) to investment in energy participation,” she said.

The aim of the conference was to explore PPP investment opportunities in infrastructure and the provision of public services.

It brought together investors, financiers, project owners and developers who will provide insight on the pertinent issues and challenges to developing credible and viable projects. Shafudah also brought to the audience's attention a planned 25 megawatt solar plant the City of Windhoek is investigating for potential implementation.

The conference would bring together those willing to invest, and those with sound power projects, Shafudah said.

“It affords us the opportunity to discuss various strategies and ways to mobilise private capital, and understanding the perspectives of all stakeholders involved in infrastructure projects such as sponsors and portfolio investors as well as to discuss how Namibia can optimise investments in the energy sector, in particular Independent Power Producers (IPPs).”

Government since the establishment of a PPP unit in the ministry of finance, brought about a sound and a conducive business environment for all those willing to partner with it, or with public entities, Shafudah said to assure investors.

A consultant would also be brought on board to help government sift through various projects that could potentially make sense to investors over a period of 10-months Shafudah announced at the conference.

OGONE TLHAGE

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