Taqa says work starts on Ghana power project

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Taqa CEO, Carl Sheldon.

Taqa CEO, Carl Sheldon.

Abu Dhabi National Energy Company, also known as Taqa, has announced that work has started to expand its power plant project in Ghana.

Once completed, Takoradi 2, in which Taqa has a 90 percent stake, will account for about 15 percent of Ghana's generation capacity, providing power to more than a million people, the company said in a statement.

The expansion, being carried out by Mitsui & Co (Japan) and KEPCO E&C (Korea), is scheduled for commissioning in the fourth quarter of 2014.

Carl Sheldon, CEO at Taqa, said: "The Takoradi 2 power plant expansion project builds on Taqa's position as a trusted operator of strategic energy infrastructure in Ghana.

"We are helping Ghana to meet its growing energy needs while increasing the efficiency of the electricity generation system."

The expansion project supports the Ghanaian Government's efforts to develop the country's electricity sector and promote the use of indigenous natural gas supplies.

The expansion will increase the plant's output from 220 megawatt (MW) by 50 percent without requiring extra fuel or producing additional emissions.

In 2011, Taqa and the Volta River Authority (VRA) upgraded the plant from burning imported oil to primarily burn natural gas.

Taqa acquired a 90 percent share in the Takoradi 2 plant in 2007. The VRA, the main generator of electricity in Ghana, holds the remaining 10 percent while Taqa is operator of the facility.

Taqa obtained Ghanaian government approvals last year and completed the project financing arrangements in January.

Takoradi 2 is Taqa's second expansion project in Africa following the $1.6bn expansion of the company's Jorf Lasfar power plant in Morocco.

John Dramani Mahama, the President of Ghana, said at a ground-breaking ceremony: "The Takoradi 2 expansion project reflects our energy for growth programme aimed at increasing investments in the energy sector to build capacity for the future."

Khalid Al-Ghaith, Assistant Foreign Minister for Economic Affairs for the UAE, added: "We are encouraging investments in Africa and will continue to back our sovereign companies such as Taqa. We look forward to strengthen the relationship between Ghana and UAE and look forward to seeing more official visits and further agreements."

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