By 2018, the collective financial contributions of various international development partners towards the improvement and efficiency of Nigeria's power sector would have amounted to $2 billion , the regional Director and Representative of the United Nation Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), Dr. Patrick Kormawa said on Friday. This is as the federal government has commended General Electric for committing $350m in financing its operation in Nigeria . It equally lauded GE for its positive progress and proactive measures in keeping with the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the federal government. Kormawa also stated in a presentation that he made on behalf of the development partners in Nigeria's power sector at the just concluded sixth edition of the Nigerian power summit, organised by the Ministry of Power in Abuja , that the development partners have with their financial commitments, demonstrated confidence in the ability of Nigeria's power sector to provide the country's national economy with the needed push for further development. He listed some of the donor partners whose contributions he said have been significant in Nigeria's power sector reforms to include; UNIDO, the World Bank , United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), European Union and Germany's Deutsche Gesellschaft fÜr Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ). Others are the British Department for International Development (DfID) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) amongst others. Shortly after giving a concise detail on the various components of the donors' contributions, Kormawa said: "Collectively, development partners in Nigeria would have contributed up to $2 billion by 2018 towards the improvement and efficiency of the power sector in Nigeria . We are confident that this will contribute significantly towards the growth and sustainability of the power sector. Evidently, Nigeria is not alone." Kormawa also requested for adequate time from Nigerians to allow for substantial benefits from the privatisation of defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN). He added that while there are obvious post-privatisation challenges, the country should endeavour to learn from the success stories of countries like the United Kingdom , India , Bulgaria and Romania who he noted have gone through the same path with similar challenges. "We commend the commitment and success of the federal government of Nigeria in deregulating the power sector. Access to electricity is the power house of an economy; without doubt, we believe that Nigeria is one step closer towards economic prosperity and equitable growth. The United Kingdom , India and recently Bulgaria , Macedonia and Romania are significant success stories of the gains of privatisation; examples include foreign direct investment, private sector growth, infrastructure, an enabling business environment and so on. "While we celebrate their achievement, we do not disregard their challenges or the difficulties that arise post-privatisation. We know these challenges, that is why we are here today. However, in the midst of our deliberations and discussions, I'll like to remind everyone here today from the regulator to the consumer and investor that adequate time is needed to substantially benefit from the gains of the process,", Kormawa said. He further said: "I am pleased to inform you that the development partners in the power sector are working closely with the federal government through the ministry of power to relentlessly ensure an effective outcome of the power sector reforms. "The AfDB is providing support to improve interventions in the power transmission systems, DfID is providing support to increase the volume of electricity generated and sent out, the European Union and GIZ are providing support to improve the conditions for the application of and investments in the renewable energy and energy efficiency as well as promotion of rural electrification. "JICA is providing technical assistance in the areas of power policy, hydro power planning as well as training to technical staff in the power sector, USAID is supporting hydro power, renewable energy and improvements in the power transmission and distribution networks. "UNIDO that I represent in Nigeria and West Africa is providing technical assistance in the area of renewable energy and implementation of the UNSG's (United Nation Secretary General) initiative-Sustainable Energy for All; the World Bank is providing significant support to the energy sector reform programme with the aim to increase the installed power generation capacity in the country and improve efficiency of electricity delivery. According to Vice President Namadi Sambo, President Goodluck Jonathan and all Nigerians "are interested to seeing that partnership with the company succeeds." He pledged that "all cooperation needed would be provided for the company to succeed in its operations in the country." The vice president commended GE for engaging other Nigerians and global partners in ensuring that the objective of developing the country's energy and other sectors are achieved.
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