NEW DELHI - Nigerian engineers and administrators are being trained in India to boost their capacity to provide electricity access in the West African country.
To enhance the local energy sector and thus boost economic growth, Nigeria is collaborating with India on the initiative to reform the energy sector through human resource development, in a good example of South-South co-operation.
|Programme Coordinator of UNOPS in Nigeria, Alidu Wirba delivers an inaugural speech at the programme launch|
The Nigerian government is attempting to better harness its natural energy resources as the country currently has one of the lowest rates of electricity access in the world. Developing capacity within the energy sector is vital to improve the access to energy needed to attain the Millennium Development Goals. Poor infrastructure, management, planning and regulation, and general under-investment have all hindered the performance of the energy sector and affected the country’s economic growth.
Nigerian professionals are acquiring knowledge, skills and best practice from India’s National Power Training Institute. This includes building capacity in power generation, transmission, distribution, management, marketing and policy. Indian officials are also travelling to Nigeria to support in-country training workshops. Future trainings are planned on the use of best practices in other countries with similar experiences to Nigeria, such as Argentina and Thailand.
Key personnel from the National Power Training Institute of Nigeria, the Power Holding Company of Nigeria and other related government agencies are taking part.
|Lighting of the lamp to commemorate the programme launch|
With close to $1 million in funds from the World Bank, UNOPS is supporting the programme by designing training courses, facilitating links between institutions and monitoring training performance.
The Director General of the National Power Training Institute of Nigeria, Reuben Okeke, said: “The Nigerian Government is committed to the provision of affordable and reliable electricity.” He added that the global presence of UNOPS had facilitated the implementation of the programme.
The World Bank is also considering funding a $400 million facility for the Nigeria Electricity and Gas Improvement Project. Building the capacity of Nigerian energy sector professionals is essential for this investment to be effective.