To complete the West African Power Pool (WAPP) sub-regional interconnection project referred to as the 330 kV WAPP Northcore regional interconnection project will cost the financiers-the African Development Bank (AfDB), Agence Française de Développement (AFD), the World Bank (WB) and the federal government of Nigeria (FGN) a total of USD 568 million.
This was disclosed by the minister of power, Sale Mamman, in his welcome address at the first session of the joint ministerial steering committee of WAPP, comprising Nigeria, Niger, Benin, Togo, Burkina Faso Regional Electricity Interconnection Project in Abuja.
The North Core Project involves the construction of approximately 875 km of 330 kV and 24 km 225 kV transmission lines from Nigeria to Burkina Faso, through Niger and Benin with associated substations.
“This large-scale project is financed by the African Development Bank (AfDB), Agence Française de Développement (AFD), the World Bank (WB) and the federal government of Nigeria (FGN) at a total amount of USD 568 million,” he explained, adding that upon completion, the operation and maintenance of the entire infrastructure shall be handed over to the utility companies of the participating countries.
He expressed confidence that, with the commitment and collaborative effort of WAPP and the development partners, the project will be completed in the 3rd quarter of 2023 and will serve as a sustainable solution and major contributor to the power sector of West Africa.
He further said that the project is considered as one of the priority projects in the infrastructure programme of WAPP aimed at facilitating efficient energy trade in the sub-region among several other benefits.
“This has already been assented to by the ECOWAS heads of states and governments, in their approval in December 2018, of the ECOWAS master plan for the development of regional generation and transmission infrastructure 2019-2033,” he said.
According to the minister, the project will also involve the electrification of rural communities located within a 5 km radius on both sides of the line, and the implementation of several environmental and social mitigation measures.
In his address, secretary general of WAPP, Mr. Siengui Apollinaire Ki, said the project is being implemented according to the new model of institutional framework for development by WAPP and the countries concerned.