In West Africa, the Gambian and Senegalese governments have signed a memorandum of understanding that will lead to the fruition of a cross-border electricity initiative, strengthening energy cooperation between the two countries.
Last week, the Gambian petroleum and energy minister, Fafa Sanyang, led a team of officials to Dakar for meetings with Senegalese counterparts, The Point reported.
It is reported that apart from finalising the memorandum of understanding, the national utilities, Société Nationale d’Électricité de Sénégal (SENELEC) and National Water and Electricity Company (NAWEC), also initialed a concessional draft power purchase agreement, to be presented for approval by their respective boards for final signature.
Cross-border electricity agreement
The power purchase agreement deal will connect cross-border points at Keur Ayib, Karang and Tamba Kunda, media reported.
Media highlighted that through this initiative, most parts of rural Gambia are expected to enjoy access to 24-hour electricity, which is seen as a significant milestone in the Gambian government’s rural electrification programme.
Policies and strategies
While in Dakar, Minister Sanyang met with Prime Minister Mahammed Dione of Senegal. He briefed him on the Gambian government’s aspirations of sector-wide cooperation between the two ministries of energy and petroleum.
Sanyang explained that the objective was to align policies and strategies and mutually defend both countries’ interests as members of several regional organisations.
These include the West Africa Power Pool, the Gambia River Basin Development Organisation, the Senegalo-Gambia Permanent Secretariat and the Mauritania-Senegal-Gambia-Guinea-Bissau-Guinea (Conakry) Geological Basin.
Prime Minister Dione welcomed the initiative and confirmed the Senegalese government’s commitment and full support, media stated.
He urged officials on both sides to take the necessary next steps to expeditiously formalise the cross-border electricity agreement through diplomatic channels.
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