- E & S
- ACADEMIC CORNER
Whereas 11 out of 17 approved projects are now under full construction or commissioned (Kakira and Soroti), most of the remaining schemes are likely to break ground within the first half of 2017. Five hydropower projects and one solar project are expected to reach commercial operation this year, with most others following in 2018. To ensure timely commissioning and achievement of the time-bound GET FiT capacity and production targets, a key focus of KfW and the GET FiT Secretariat going forward will be to assist the least advanced projects to fast-track construction start. Efforts are also being made to enable potential replacement of any project that fails to meet critical deadlines.
Another key focus of the GET FiT team will be the continued supervision of projects under construction, to ensure compliance with performance standards and other requirements. Continued close communication with developers and flexible support on technical, environmental and social issues will be vital in avoiding delays and ensuring quality of works.
To safeguard GET FiT targets and ensure viable grid interconnection for all projects, KfW and the GET FiT Secretariat will maintain pressure on implementation of components within the interconnection support scheme. This includes the comprehensive infrastructure reinforcements and TA support which require a high level of coordination between all stakeholders. The GET FiT team will support GoU entities and project developers by facilitating joint planning and continuous dialogue throughout the process. Continued efforts in this regard will be critical to avoid project delays and legal issues related to grid interconnection for the range of projects.
The upcoming year will be a decisive one for the Program. If important milestones such as construction starts or financial close are missed, some projects may have to be excluded from the portfolio. These in turn could potentially be replaced by previously rejected projects in order to maintain capacity targets, depending on outcome of re-appraisals.
Most of all, 2017 is the year in which commissioning of the first hydropower projects in the portfolio, as well as the second solar plant, are planned. Adding to this, construction of critical grid infrastructure for power evacuation of GET FiT projects will commence, and ERA will benefit from improved regulatory frameworks and comprehensive capacity building in key areas of its core business. Hence, most of all, this year is likely to become a highly productive, fruitful and exciting year for GET FiT stakeholders and the Ugandan power sector.