President Ellen Johnson has announced a 10 percent reduction in electricity tariff for customers connected to the Liberia Electricity Cooperation (LEC) energy grid, an Executive Mansion release said yesterday. The tariff, according to the release, has been reduced from 39 cents to 35 cents per kilowatt/hour. Since August, 2016, the tariff has seen reduction from 54 cents to the current 35 cents per Kw/hr.
President Sirleaf made the pronouncement when Liberia and Germany signed a KfW €15 million grant at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Monrovia. She thanked the President’s Delivery Unit (PDU), the German Ambassador to Liberia, Hubert Jager, and KfW for the ‘great job’ and for bringing the agreement to reality. The President noted that over 9,000 connections have been made in the City of Paynesville and other parts of Monrovia with enhanced visibility. She also indicated that funding is already available for 93,000 connections within the Bomi, Kakata and RIA corridors – an initiative that will spread electricity beyond Monrovia. “The small light today and big light tomorrow has become a dream realized,” President Sirleaf declared.
The project was initiated in June 2017 when the President’s Delivery Unit (PDU) met with KfW for bilateral talks in Frankfurt, Germany and that the signing ceremony yesterday will see the release of funds in October this year with the first connections in the second quarter of 2018. The PDU has worked hard with KfW to ensure the release of funding and procurement got underway before President Sirleaf leaves early next year. The agreement is expected to deliver 16,000 new connections that will fill the gaps between the larger projects in areas such as Clay Ashland – Bentol- Fendell; Double Bridge-Pipeline-Police Academy and Duport Road – Rehab Communities. Schools and medical institutions in the targeted areas will benefit from the additional connections. As the customer base grows, there will be further reduction in the tariff rate.
Finance and Development Planning Minister Boima Kamara and Acting Board Chairperson of the LEC Dr. Clarence Moniba signed on behalf of the government while Herr Andre Collins signed for KfW. Earlier, Minister Kamara lauded Germany for standing tall in its development cooperation with Liberia. He pointed out that the agreement will set the platform for a stronger recovery of the economy for post-2017. “Liberia is grateful to Germany and KfW as this intervention comes at a time of strong efforts aimed at resuscitating the Liberian economy,” Minister Kamara said.
German Ambassador Hubert Jager recommitted his country to upholding its bilateral relations with Liberia and praised the Government of Liberia for concluding the agreement in record time. He indicated that it took the team just two months to negotiate and conclude the Grant Agreement compared to the nine to twelve months it normally takes for such initiatives.