Government to continue investing in power generation, transmission

Government has disclosed that it will continue investing in power generation, transmission and distribution to reduce the power deficit that the country sometimes experiences especially when natural disasters strike.

Principle Secretary for Energy, Engineer Alfonso Chikuni, made the remarks on Wednesday after a media tour of the Improvement of the Rehabilitation and Expansion project implemented by Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi Limited (Escom) with funding from Japanese government at its Kanengo and Old Town Substations.

Part of the media tour

Japanese government through Japanese International Corporation Agency (JICA) granted $19 million while Malawi has pumped in $2million into the project which was launched in July, 2020.

He said government wants to ensure that most Malawians in rural and urban areas have access to electricity.

“Escom is rehabilitating and expanding the two substations to improve reliability and accessibility of electricity in the city of Lilongwe,” he said.

He added that his ministry will continue to support and create a conducive environment for other players in the energy sector to thrive and contribute to the country’s development.

Japanese Embassy Charge d’ Affaires, Seiji Tashiro, said the project aims to support the people of Malawi to have access to improved transmission and distribution of energy for a reliable and stable supply of electricity for sustainable economic and social development activities in Lilongwe City.

“Japan is determined to support Malawi’s effort for its socio-economic development including infrastructure development in the energy sector in line with the Malawi 2063 vision,” he said

Escom Chief Operating Officer, Maxwell Mulimakwenda, the project will go a long way in improving power supply in the city of Lilongwe thereby contributing to the social economic development of the country as electricity is the catalyst for economic growth. 

“So far we have completed 78.2 percent of the works whose benefits include replacing old equipment and upgrading capacity of the two sub stations,” he said. 

Mulimakwenda said through the project, the institution will upgrade Kanengo Sub station from 85MW to 158MW thereby making it possible for ESCOM to accommodate about 58,000 new connections.

The project also involves upgrading of Old Town Substation from 37.5MW to 50MW thereby allowing ESCOM to connect 21,000 new customers, he said.

Mulimakwenda observed that the project could not have come at any better time considering that urbanization has led to an increase in electricity demand thereby putting a strain on the existing transmission and distribution network.

Meanwhile, the trucks carrying transformers have arrived in the country.

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