The efforts of the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel in the power sector has taken another quantum leap with the Ibom Power Plant about to move into phase two. The Plant currently runs a generating capacity of 191MW but has a total installed capacity of 685MW. The second phase when completed will generate not less than 500MW.
A group of investors from China last week held a crucial meeting with the Board and Management of the company at its operational headquarters in Ikot Abasi to partner the second phase of power plant. Speaking to the media after a tour round the existing facilities that runs phase one of the plant as well as the project site for its phase two, Mr. Jack Hu, assistant manager of Power China said his team was impressed with the location and infrastructures of Ibom Power Company.
‘To be honest, I think the location is fantastic for a power plant. Ibom Power has good facilities. There is good road network which will be good for transportation in the future. ‘There is the gas facility and water by Septa Energy which will provide a rich and stable gas supply to our project site.
‘We have also seen the transmission line facility here and the substation which is just one kilometer away. In the future, when the partnership deal is signed, we will bring in our equipment, install and evacuate power directly from our transformer to the substation. This will reduce investment costs’, he noted.
According to him, they have been able to confirm the performance and effectiveness of the plant and are satisfied with the existing infrastructures at the site for phase two.
On the way forward after the meeting, he said discussions will begin immediately between the two parties involved for an agreeable working framework after which there will be a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), and thereafter, they will commence work by the terms of schedule.
Responding to a question on the project’s financial implication on government part, the Chairman Board of Ibom Power Company, Engr. Etido Inyang who led the Board of Directors, management team and the visiting team of investors stated that it will not be a major financial constraint for government as it will leverage on its existing infrastructures. The investors will shoulder a large chunk of the financing, he emphasized.
‘We are looking for investors with proven financial and technical competence and one of them is HYPEC in conjunction with Shenghen Nantian. Tempo is also the local consortium putting everybody together. On the part of Akwa Ibom government, we have already prepared the land and we have proximity to gas. We have the NIPP substation and the connection. We are looking at what we have already installed’. He added that the goodwill of Governor Emmanuel was crucial in attracting the investors.
On the time frame for the project, Engr. Inyang revealed that discussions will be concluded within the next two months and if both parties come to mutually acceptable terms, then work will begin immediately. ‘If the investors and Akwa Ibom government can both agree on mutually favourable terms, we are certain that within the next nine months to a year, we will have the Phase Two of the plant running. Ikot Abasi is an industrial hub going by the plans of the governor and part of the power that will be generated from this will be retained in this area’, he disclosed. According to the chairman, the meeting was a major fact finding tour by HYPEC and Nantian companies to ascertain the functionality and productivity of the plant.
The MD, Engr Meyen Etukudo who said the impacts of the second phase when completed will be numerous listed them to include quality and reliable 24hour power supply and massive job openings and employment opportunities. Meyen disclosed that the power generated in the Phase Two will be evacuated through a 330KV double circuit transmission line which is being constructed by the NIPP, running through Ikot Abasi to Ikot Ekpene.
According to the MD, the line under construction has the capacity to evacuate up to 1200MW and, as such, will easily evacuate the 500MW phase two. On the substation which is about a kilometre away from the phase two site, he explained that the Ikot Abasi substation is 3x 150MVA and that each 150MVA is 120MW multiplied by 3 equals 360MW. In the entourage of Mr. Jack Wu were Wei Yubao (Vice President of Shenghen Nantian), Wang Kai (HYPEC/Power China), Deng Youjing (Lead Engineer, HYPEC), Tu Kenan (Marketing Director HYPEC/Power China), Collins Kalabare and Hameed Alaba, both of Tempo Energy.