Ghana’s energy sector has received a boost of 1.8 million Euro from the government of the Federal Republic of Germany, through the Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) to be disbursed in two years, in pursuance of a successful implementation of the Renewable Energy Act 832 enacted in 2011.
Speaking at the launch of the joint programme for a successful implementation of the renewable energy Act in Accra, Deputy Minister for Energy and Petroleum, John Jinapor commended the German government for its efforts over the years to build capacities in Ghana’s energy sector, adding, “Most high ranking officials in the energy sector today are beneficiaries of GIZ programmes.
Mr Jinapor giving the background of Ghana’s energy history said, the country relied solely on hydroelectricity until 1997 and 2007 when the water level of the Akosombo Dam fell drastically, forcing governments at the time to shift their attention to thermoelectricity by constructing thermal plants to support the energy sector, then the recent hitches from the West African Gas Pipeline Project which caused an energy shortfall of about 300MW, making government’s quest to invest in renewable very timely.
The Deputy Minister, further revealed that the Energy Commission and the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) are developing the necessary regulatory framework and guidelines for the renewable energy sector.
“The feed-in-tariff for solar, wind, hydro and biomass have been gazette which now provide basis for economic decision for investors and Government,” he added.
The Acting German Ambassador to Ghana, Thomas Wimmer, in his remark touted the successes German renewable energy sector, saying Germany has increased its renewables shares from 6 per cent to 20 per cent, triggering an investment of more than 40bn Euros (almost GH¢80bn) last year.
Mr Wimmer further added that German companies involved in the renewable energy sector also employ about 350, 000 people; a stride he urged Ghana companies to emulate to ease the soaring unemployment issue in Ghana.
Mr Wisdom Ahiataku-Togobo, a Director of Renewable Energy at the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum said, the joint program would focus on building capacity of stakeholders in the renewable energy sector.
Present at the function were representatives from Energy Commission, PURC, Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), Volta River Authority (VRA), Ghana Grid Company Limited (GRIDCO), Association of Ghana Solar Industries (AGSI) and ABANTU for Development (a gender advocacy group).