Minister of Electricity and Renewable energy Mohamed Shaker - Archive Photo.
CAIRO – 12 July 2017: The Ministry of Electricity will auction a 500MW solar plant to boost investments in the renewable sector, Minister of Electricity Mohamed Shaker said Wednesday.
Shaker did not disclose the location of the solar plant.
In an interview with Youm7, Shaker reviewed the efforts of his ministry to offset debts and improve its service.
The collection rate of electricity bills from the household sector stands at 94 percent, and 78 percent from the commercial sector.
To avoid stealing power connections from street-lighting network by informal houses, Shaker said the ministry is adopting a project to install code meters at these buildings.
“Implementing this project helped the ministry save LE 2 billion,” Shaker said, adding that installations will be finished by August.
Commenting on the power cuts that started to come back this month, Shaker said the blackouts come due to technical malfunctions, and not a result of an overload on power stations, as was the case before.
Addressing the technical aspects, the Electricity Ministry plans to build new 1,220 km transmission lines, which Shaker said will be finished in three years, in addition to establishing 10,000 power transformers that will be completed in two years.
The Electricity Ministry is facing a challenge in meeting the costs of generating electricity amid increasing fuel demands for power plants and rising debts owed to government entities.
More funds are expected to be added to the ministry’s coffers, however, after it announced new electricity tariffs this month, with increases ranging between 18-35 percent.