When it arrives, the 225megawatt plant will increase to 450 megawatts Karpower’s contribution to the national grid.
Speaking to journalists on the first power-ship stationed at the Tema Fishing Harbour, the company’s Executive Director for Business Development, Zeynep Harezi, said the most important aspects of the financial guarantee for the second power-ship are in place, which has triggered the delivery.
“As per our contract, the second power-ship is to be delivered 365 days from the financial guarantee. So the financial guarantee was put in place during the second half of 2015,” she said.
To bring in the two power-ships, the company has asked for a US$100million guarantee, US$50million for each, to insulate it against failure by the ECG to pay for the power.
The GNPC is issuing the guarantees because it will be the main supplier of fuel to the barges — also because the corporation needs to find uses for the Sankofa gas or the country will pay penalties to ENI, which will produce the gas.
“So we are going to initially start the barges with HFO [Heavy Fuel Oil], and then as soon as our gas comes on-stream we will be supplying gas,” Alex Mould told the B&FT late last year.
“One of the conditions of ENI for this project [Sankofa] to go on is that GNPC must ensure it has the capacity to take the gas; so that is why GNPC entered into this. We have to make sure that the capacity is ready to take the gas. If not, then we start paying penalties to ENI for not being able to take the gas. It is a take or pay contract. So far as the gas is available, we are supposed to take it. If there is nowhere for us to dispose of the gas, it becomes a financial loss to the country,” he explained.
Aysegul Sultan, the first of the two power-ships the company is providing, commenced power generation on Friday, December 17, 2015, and is feeding up to 225megawatts into the grid.
The company has an arrangement with the GNPC for the supply of HFO, and the expectation is that when gas from the Sankofa project comes on-stream the plant will be moved onto gas.
According to Zeynep Harezi, although the contract says the power-ships should be run on HFO for the first 5 years before they can be moved to gas, the company is ready to negotiate if gas becomes available before the five years.
The company says its project will deliver savings to Ghana in the range of US$120million annually, as well as create jobs for the country.