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Spliting of Escom on track – government

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Government Says the process of unbundling the Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (Escom) is on a positive trajectory and that stakeholders are now formulating the legal framework and policy to guide the whole process.

Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Energy Ben Botolo says there are high hopes that the whole process will be completed within the set time frame.

Government set up a special committee to oversee the process which will disband Escom into two separate firms, one responsible for electricity generation and the other transmission and distribution of power to commercial and domestic customers.

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The Power Market Restructing is being implemented with support from the Us Government’s Millenium Challenge Corporation (MCC) Compact Project.

And according to Botolo, when the process is complete, it will ease pressure on government in managing Escom’s operations.

“Currently, Escom is a vertically integrated company which means it does everything from power generation, transmission, and distribution. It is a monopoly in all segments, hence, the need to disband.

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“If the Independent Power Producers are to come in, they have to compete with a company that is well established in all aspects of the market, so some times it is a challenge. In other countries, it has worked, but in case of Malawi we are finding it somehow challenging,” said Botolo.

He added that the initiative will also help to ease the persisting power shortages facing the country.

Botolo further said that the process will not result in loss of jobs except for staff members who would have attained their retirement age at the time the project is complete.

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