Government is currently in talks with producers within the energy mix to help drive down the cost of power to consumers, especially to bulk users of the commodity such as the extractives and other industrial sectors.
Energy Minister Peter Amewu, in a speech read on his behalf at the 2019 Ghana Mining and Energy Summit in Accra, indicated that the intervention has become critical to help reposition the mining sector to drive investment opportunities.
“The energy sector is key to the industrial agenda of every nation; access to reliable energy services at affordable rates will ensure that key investments into the mining and other industrial sectors of the economy are realised,” he said.
He added: “We are aware that investments in mining explorations will not be realised if the perennial problems with energy availability and cost continue.
“It is the desire of government to harness opportunities and create more value from core minerals such as gold, bauxite and aluminum – using an extensive approach that considers the need for reliable and competitive cost of power.”
Mr. Amewu indicated that government, as a partner in development, will work to ensure operations in the industrial space are not disrupted by unplanned energy challenges – which he said are being tackled head-on.
According to the minister, the mining sector, apart from being a competitive industry, is one of the major users of the country’s energy.
He said it is the view of government that all competitive industries which depend heavily on the pricing and availability of energy are considered fundamental stakeholders in management of the sector.
“The goal of pushing the country to greater economic independence has proven to be more dependent on reliable energy for propelling industry toward the creation of a modern industrialised economy.
“We are aware that to industrialise we need to create enterprises that are not only competitive but also viable in the long-term,” Mr. Amewu noted.
The minister further highlighted the need to deepen the mining sector’s contribution to grow the economy and accelerate national development.
He said: “We must rise to the challenge of ensuring that activities in the mining sector impact positively on communities, their people and the economy as a whole.”
This year’s GMES, on the theme ‘Harnessing mining and energy potential to accelerate national development’, pooled sector actors together to brainstorm solutions for the challenges in the mining and energy sectors.