With the impact of energy costs on the productive sector becoming unbearable, exploring clean, sustainable alternative energy source has become attractive to operators in the value-chain industry, especially if they hope to remain competitive in the global market.
Indeed, estimates from the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) showed that operators spent about N63 billion on providing alternative power to their production plants in the first half of 2016, with collated data for the second half showing a triple-fold rise in the figure due to higher energy costs within the period.
According to operators, such huge costs are not sustainable for businesses considering the operating environment where locally produced goods have to compete with imported and smuggled products.
Making a case for renewable energy in industrialization plan, former Director General, United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO), and former United Nations Under-Secretary General and the Special Representative of the Secretary General on Sustainable Energy for All, Dr Kandeh Yumkella, stated that Nigeria had in time past missed several revolutions that could enhance economic prosperity.
According to him, having missed the industrial, agric and information Technology revolution, Nigeria cannot afford to miss the green energy revolution considering the gaps unmet in terms of energy demand.
He explained that many countries are already developing products and machinery that can work efficiently using direct current (DC) unlike the alternate current (AC) devices presently depending on the national grid or other alternative sources like gas and fossil energy.
While the cost of energy for manufacturers had risen from N25 billion in 2014 to N58.82 billion in 2015 and further in 2016, operators explained that power takes up between 30 and 40 per cent of total expenditure, especially now that there are other challenges like the foreign exchange.
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