Uganda government purchased power from Jacobsen at 48.1 billion Shillings in 2019. This figure is expected to drop to 42 billion Shillings in 2020, according to ERA which adds that the decrease in power purchase cost is on the account of reduced generation of thermal capacity due to the new renewable commissioned.
Namanve Thermal Power Plant, a heavy fuel oil plant operated by Jacobsen Uganda Thermal Power Plant Limited is to revert to Uganda government after the concession of Jacobsen
expires next month.
Wandera, the Director of Corporate and Consumer Affairs at the Electricity Regulatory Authority says that the Concession (License, Power Purchase
Agreement and Implementation Agreement) of Jacobsen Uganda Power Plant Company
Limited is to expire in August 2020 and will be reverting to the government.
50 MW plant will be handed over Uganda Electricity Generation Company Limited
(UEGCL), a government agency that oversees the generation of electricity in the country. Simon
Kasyate, the head of Communication and Corporate Affairs at UEGCL also confirmed the plan to take over the plant.
Thermal plants, the second one being Electromaxx in
Tororo, are the most expensive electricity that the government buys with each unit
at USD 18 cents (666.04 shillings).
Uganda government purchased power from Jacobsen at 48.1
billion Shillings in 2019. This figure is expected to drop to 42 billion Shillings
in 2020, according to ERA which adds that the decrease in power purchase cost is on the account of reduced generation of thermal capacity due to the new renewable
Since 2014, Jacobsen’s concession has been received a one-year renewal basis upon each period expiry. But Jacobsen power is
not often used. The plant is there as a fall back plant in case there is
an emergence or a requirement for extra power.
Dickens Kamugisha, the executive director of the
African Institute for Energy Governance (AFIEGO), said the right thing to do at
the moment is to decommission the Jacobsen plant. He said thermal power has
been extremely expensive for the country and is partly why Ugandans pay
expensively to use electricity.
//Cue in; We have been…
Cue out… that contract.”//
In 2018, ERA said it had renewed the company’s
license because it considered the energy needs of the country, including the
need for emergency or reserve thermal power to meet the energy demands of the
country, following the vandalism of five transmission towers between Nalubaale and
Lugogo. This led to the collapse of the Owens Falls – Lugogo
132 kV transmission line and there was an expectation of power surges.
Jacobsen Electricity Company
(Uganda) Limited, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Jacobsen
, an independent Norwegian
production company. The Namanve power plant was
completed in 2008 at a cost of USD 92 million. Jacobsen was to handover the plant upon recovery of this money.