Sector Overview

Overview of The Ghana Power Sector

Ghana’s power supply sources are from hydroelectricity, thermal fueled by crude oil, natural gas and diesel, solar and also imports from La Cote D’Ivoire. Ghana also exports power to Togo, Benin and Burkina Faso. Ongoing grid expansions would allow further exports to other neighboring countries in the sub region.

            Ghana has a vibrant power generation terrain with players from both the public and private sectors. Reforms in the Power Sector in the 1980’s gradually removed barriers and created a level playing field for the participation of independent power producers in an area which hitherto had only public sector participants.

The total installed capacity for existing plants in Ghana is 4,132MW consisting of Hydro 38%, Thermal 61% and Solar less than 1%

Transmission of power is the responsibility of the Ghana Grid Company (GRIDCo) which was established in 2006, in accordance with the Energy Commission Act, 1997 ( Act 541) and the Volta River Development (Amendment) Act,2005 (Act 692) which provide for the establishment and exclusive operation of the National Interconnected Transmission System by an independent public utility and the separation of transmission functions of the Volta River Authority (VRA) from its other activities within the framework of the Power Sector Reforms.

Government through the Ministry of Energy is embarking on major projects aimed at addressing transmission challenges through progressive replacement of over aged and obsolete equipment and reinforcement of others including the construction of 161Kv and 330Kv Transmission lines, construction of new substations across the country, expansion of some existing substations and installation of capacity banks.

Electricity distribution in Ghana is carried out by three main distribution utilities, two state-owned and one private sector operated.

The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), the largest distribution company, is a limited liability company wholly owned by the government of Ghana. ECG is currently responsible for distribution and supply of electricity in six political/administrative regions in southern Ghana namely, Ashanti, Central, Eastern, Greater Accra, Volta and Western Region.

Prior to reforms in Ghana’s power sector in 1980’s, ECG was responsible for the distribution of power in the whole of the country. In 1987, the Northern Electricity Department (NED) of the VRA was charged with the distribution of electricity to Berong-Ahafo, Northern, Upper East and Upper West regions of Ghana and started with an initial load of about 10MW with customer population of about 12,000. The Network has grown extensively over the years mainly as a result of the various electrification programs of government. NEDCo has since 2012 been established as a subsidiary of VRA.

Enclave power company Ltd (EPC) is the only privately-owned electricity distribution company operating in the Tema Free Zones Enclave in the Greater Accra Region. EPC has about 50 industrial customer based. There is effort to expand private participation in distribution and enhance supply reliability through the implementation of the compact II with the millennium challenge corporation (MCC) of the United States of America.

The National Electrification Scheme (NES) was instituted in 1989 with the policy objective of ensuring that all parts of the country are provided with reliable electricity supply by 2020. At the commencement of the NES in 1990, accessibility to electricity supply was estimated at about 20%. Ghana has since achieved an enviable record of having the highest electricity access rate in Sub-Saharan Africa. The national average access rate is currently at 83.24% and to attain universal access by 2020.

Ghana is well endowed with renewable energy resources which are yet to be fully exploited. These include biomass, hydropower potentials, wind potentials along the coast and high solar irradiation. Renewable energy currently contributes 1% to the energy mix. The aim is to achieve 10% renewable in the mix by 2020.

The renewable energy Act (Act 832), passed in 2011, seeks to create the enabling environment for attracting private sector investment in the renewable energy sector to ensure the achievement of the 10% policy target. A renewable energy master plan is currently under development.

Various strategies, programs and projects are being pursued towards achievement of the policy target. These include:

a)     Planned and structured deployment of utility scale renewable energy projects to be sourced through competitive bidding. As a first round. Government has successfully launched a competitive tender for procurement of a 20MW solar plant for supply of electricity to the Electricity Company of Ghana under an independent power producer arrangement. The Bui Power Authority has also concluded a 50MW solar plan tender process.

b)     Mainstreaming renewable energy mini-grids into the National Electrification Scheme (NES) to provide clean and sustainable electricity in mainly island and lakeside communities.

c)     Studies to update existing data on small hydro potentials.

d)     A number of sustainable energy and productive use of energy initiatives with special focus on small- scale irrigation in agriculture and food processing are also being pursued.

The National roadmap to integrate nuclear power into Ghana’s energy mix has been developed and accepted by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Basic data on plant sites have been completed, awaiting field data acquisition and feasibility studies.





Overview of The Ghana Petroleum Sector

The petroleum industry is typically categorized into three segments; Upstream, Midstream and Downstream. For the purposes of regulation in Ghana, the industry is divided into Upstream and downstream subsectors which cover activities from the exploration and production of petroleum through refining, storage, transportation, to the marketing of petroleum products.

Upstream activities include pre-licensing, licensing, exploration and appraisal, field development and production, disposal and decommissioning. Ghana has four sedimentary basins that are considered to have high prospects for the discovery of oil and gas.

They are Western (Tano- Cape Three Points) Basin, Central (Saltpond) Basin, Eastern (Accra –Keta) Basin which are all offshore and are fairly well explored and the Voltaian Basin which is onshore and has seen little exploration.

In 2007, the jubilee Field became Ghana’s first major commercial discovery. In less than a decade of First Oil from the Jubilee Field, significant strides have been made in the Upstream Subsector with twenty five (25) discoveries made since 2007. Ghana currently has three offshore producing fields, Jubilee, Tweneboa, Enyera and Ntomme (TEN) and Sankofa and Gye Nyame Field. However first Gas from the Sankofa and Gye Nyame Field is scheduled to come on stream in the third quarter of 2018.

The Ministry of Energy has worked closely with relevant stakeholders over the years to create an enabling legal and regulatory regime aimed at ensuring transparent, accountable and prudent management of Ghana’s petroleum resources. Critical Legislation in place include: the GNPC Law 1983(PNDCL64), Income Tax Act 2015 (Act 896), Petroleum Revenue Management Act, 2011 (Act 815) as amended, Petroleum Commission Act 2011(Act 821), Local Content and Local Participation Regulations 2013, (Ll 2204), Petroleum (Exploration and Production) Act, 2016 (Act 919), Petroleum (Exploration and Production) (Measurement) Regulations,2016 (Ll 2246) and Petroleum Commission (Fee and Charges) Regulations, 2015 (Ll2221).


The significant indigenous associated and non-associated gas reserves discovered recently from Ghana’s fields has created greater prospects for diversifying the economy through the utilization of the gas resource endowments to generate power to support the country’s  industrializing efforts, as well as develop new industries including commercial scale fertilizer production and a petro-chemical industry with strong job creation implications. However inadequate infrastructure, gas monetization constraints and required expertise remain major challenges to the development of a vibrant and sustainable indigenous gas industry.

The First Phase of the Gas Infrastructure Project (GIP) consisting of and Offshore Pipeline,O nshore Pipeline and a Gas Processing Plant (GPP) with a capacity of 150mmscfd has been completed.

A Gas Master Plan (GMP) has been developed to provide broad guidance on the prioritization and utilization of gas in power and non-power sectors, gas infrastructure development planning and gas pricing. It is expected that the Gas Master Plan will provide the enabling environment for increased investment in Ghana`s gas sector.

The Petroleum Downstream subsector in Ghana is permanently predominantly characterized by the importation of crude oil and finished products, refining, storage, Transportation (road, rail, lake and ocean), marketing and sale of petroleum products.

The downstream market has been deregulated. As a result, set targets for the Deregulation Policy have been achieved as follows:

·       Removal of restrictions on the establishment and operation of Petroleum infrastructural facilities;

·       Removal of restrictions on the importation of crude oil and finished petroleum products; and

·       Petroleum Product Price Liberalization.

The Downstream Sub sector, being a vibrant industry, continues to develop, expand and operate based on best international practices. The ministry will consolidate the gains made in price deregulation by commencing deregulation of transportation and ensure profitability and efficiency in the Downstream.

The importation, supply and distribution of petroleum products have more room for efficiency. As Ghana positions itself to be a petroleum hub in the sub region, increased investment in various forms of infrastructure will be reacquired and encouraged to enable the country significantly improve efficiency in providing petroleum products across the sub region. Regulations will also be put in place to create the enabling environment for market forces to compete and create the sub regional hub for petroleum products.