Power games

A $91 million electricity generation plant, jointly financed by a French construction firm and the Ivorian government, promises to metamorphose the west African nation of Cote d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast) from an importer of power to a major supplier in the region. The plant will generate 100 megawatts (mw) initially, which will be increased to 200 mw next year.

Investment in the energy sector is part of the revitalization plans of the recession-hit Ivorian economy. Energy minister Lamine Fadika says that the rural segment will be the first beneficiary of the improved electricity generation.

When fully operational, the plant will enable Cote d'Ivoire to not only become self-sufficient in energy, but also to export its excess capacity. Ivorian authorities are confident of taking over from Ghana as the regional power supplier. Ghana, home to the Volta river scheme, has seen its production going down owing to low rainfall.(IPS)