, NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 9 – The government should be keen on increasing power demand through industrialisation as it seeks to increase power capacity by 5000 Megawatts (MW) in the next two years.
According to PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) Partner Kuria Muchiru, rise in generation of power should match with demand and eradicate any possibility of over-power supply.
Muchiru explains that over-power supply would mean the current customers bearing the burden of paying for the cost of generation if there is less consumption.
“In order to consume that power whenever it comes in, industrialisation would need to be a driver. I know we have commercial sectors, construction; but until you have the industrialisation at a higher level, can you then consume that 5000MW” Muchiru explained during a briefing on Wednesday about the power sector in Kenya and Africa.
Kenya is seeking to change the Africa narrative about power sector by embarking on an ambitious but achievable project that will result in the addition of the 5000MW to the national grid by 2017 and 17,000MW by 2030.
Power connectivity has increased from 35 percent to 50 percent within the last three years with plans to achieve 70 percent by 2017 and 100 percent connectivity by 2020.
The government has been urged to put more effort in attracting investors to set up more factories and industries to eventually help in matching Kenya’s growing power generation.
“The possibility of excess capacity is real. These improvements coupled with increased power generation capacity could lead to over-supply, unless supply is adequately taken up by demand, particularly the power demands of industrialisation,” Muchiru said.
Meanwhile the government has also been urged to consider giving power subsidies to large industries to encourage a 24-hour economy.
PWC Partner Tibor Almassy says this can be implemented by perhaps cutting costs of night shift power use adding that a lot of industries are hesitant to move 24 hours to minimize the cost of electricity.
“This will play a great role in inviting more large factories to Kenya,” Almassy noted.