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Egenco upbeat on increasing output

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The Electricity Generation Company (Egenco) has reiterated its commitment to increasing energy output for the country in the short to medium terms.

The state-run energy generation company set an ambitious plan of increasing installed electricity capacity to 1,687.5 Megawatts (MW) by 2023.

This comes as less than 12 percent of the country’s population has access to electricity with installed capacity of 367.37 MW only.

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In a response to an emailed questionnaire, Egenco Senior Public Relations Officer, Mosses Gwaza, said the company is producing an average 250 MW.

He said the company is operating on a road map that is in tandem with the National Energy Policy of 2016 and the Integrated Resource Plan of 2018 covering both short and long term solutions to addressing energy challenges.

“Some of the completed projects include Nkula A rehabilitation, modernisation and upgrading with MCC funding which saw 12 megawatts added to the grid.

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“We have also completed Tedzani dam dredging and upgrading Tedzani III and installation of Diesel generators at Mapanga in Blantyre (20 MW), Kanengo in Lilongwe (10 MW) and Mzuzu (6 MW) among others,” Gwaza said.

Other projects underway according to Gwaza include the Kapichira dredging, construction of an 18MW Tedzani IV Hydro Power Plant, Kammwamba coal-fired project, expansion of Wovwe power plant, the 20MW Salima solar plant, Diesel and solar hybrid project at Likoma and Chizumulu islands and the Mpatamanga.

Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry Director of Business Environment and Policy Advocacy Madalitso Kazembe, said energy continues to be a chronic challenge to doing business in Malawi.

“Electricity was the major obstacle to doing business in 2019 across all parameters in terms of cost, time taken for new connections, and electricity supply. It continues to affect businesses in 2020. This is mainly due to lack of timely interventions to address these challenges.

“Most interventions usually miss deadlines and their future cannot be clearly determined such as the Kammwamba Coal fired power plant. Businesses are still expectant of some of the long term interventions such as the Malawi – Mozambique interconnector and other local projects whose activities are on-going,” Kazembe said.

Malawi Economic Justice Network Regional Coordinator for the South, Mike Banda, said the current energy situation is deterrent to attracting meaningful investors.

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