Delays irk energy sector investors

Government should set up a focal centre to handle energy sector issues as one of the ways of reducing bureaucratic procedures that are delaying investments in the industry, Edourd Ndayisaba, the Energy Private Developers vice-chairman, has said.
Minister for Infrastructure James Musoni (left), greets Paul de Mattos (right), the managing director of Clarke Energy, as Alex Marshall, the company’s marketing manager looks on during the power and infrastructure investment forum held in Kigali on Monday. (John Mbanda)
Minister for Infrastructure James Musoni (left), greets Paul de Mattos (right), the managing director of Clarke Energy, as Alex Marshall, the company’s marketing manager looks on during the power and infrastructure investment forum held in Kigali on Monday. (John Mbanda)

Government should set up a focal centre to handle energy sector issues as one of the ways of reducing bureaucratic procedures that are delaying investments in the industry, Edourd Ndayisaba, the Energy Private Developers vice-chairman, has said.

“One goes through many unnecessary procedures, and in different government institutions. The Rwanda Development Board (RDB) should work with other institutions and examine the possibility of establishing an independent one-stop centre to deal with energy issues.

“This will help reduce the time and cost of doing business for energy investors and other stakeholders,” Ndayisaba said.

Besides, the one-stop centre at RDB, the City of Kigali has a similar body that handles construction sector-related issues like construction permits.

Ndayisaba also said government should get involved in carrying out feasibility studies to ease the procedure.

Ndayisaba was speaking at the iPAD infrastructure and power investment conference in Kigali on Monday. Speaking at the same event, Germaine Kamayirese, the State Minister for Energy and Water, told investors that establishing a focal point for the energy industry and building the capacity for local investors and professionals would be captured in the energy policy to be published soon.

“We have already completed consultations with the private sector and other stakeholders…all these concerns will be captured in the new energy policy we working on,” Kamayirese said.

Francis Gatare, the RDB chief executive officer, said the institution works with other sectors and ministries to ensure investors are given the necessary information and guidelines without unnecessary delays.

“Our priority is to provide you the best investment climate that will also help in the realisation of our national economic development objectives,” Gatare noted.

Meanwhile, some foreign investors have expressed interest in the country’s energy sector.

Butch Carr, the director of energy at BOSCH, a South African-based energy firm, told The New Times that his company is ready to invest in Rwanda once all the necessary requirements have been met.

“We want to be part of the solution to Rwanda’s  energy challenges. We hope to work with all other partners in the realisation of the country’s energy goals,” he noted.

Rwanda’s installed energy capacity is about 147MW and the country looks to increase its power generation capacity by 61.5MW next year when projects such as Nyabarongo I (28MW), Kivuwatt 25MW, Gishoma Peat Plant (15MW) and Giggawatt solar power plant 8.5MW come on line. About 22 per cent of the population has access to power.

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