VRA to increase power supply by 1000 megawatts
Posted on: 2011-May-27        Joy fm
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The Chief Executive Officer of the Volta River Authority (VRA) has said the VRA under the current circumstances is unable to increase the volume of power supplied to the Volta Aluminum Company (VALCO) for smelting.

Mr. Awortwi stated that the Authority is generating at its maximum and has very little room to shore up volumes in the current situation.

Currently, VALCO uses power from VRA to operate 1 Portline. There are indications VALCO wants to increase the number of portlines, a move which will require more energy from VRA.

Speaking on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show on Friday, Kwaku Awortwi said such a demand cannot be met now.

“There is just not enough capacity in the system. We do have plans to put more power in the system; about 600 megawatts of thermal and about 400 megawatts of hydro over the next three years,” he added.

He however said this capacity is still not enough for the full operation of VALCO and therefore proposed that the aluminum smelter must be treated differently because of its energy intensive needs to operate effectively.

He further explained that VRA is under no pressure to increase power supply to VALCO but will offer its strategic ideas as to how its peculiar problems can be solved.

Also speaking on the show, Dr. Yao Graham of the Third World Network made a strong case for a review of the subsidies on power for VALCO.

Dr. Graham said subsidized power to VALCO will mainly benefit its foreign clients and not the local customers because it does not determine the price of its products.

He said there is a need to determine if offering subsidies for the benefit of foreigners is the most “rational use of limited resources in the country.”