Guyana charters 36 MW powership to meet increased power demand for next two years – GPL

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State electricity company, Guyana Power and Light (GPL) has entered into a two-year contract with Urbacon Concessions Investments, W.L.L (UCI), as announced on April 13, 2024. The agreement involves the chartering of a power ship that boasts a considerable capacity of 36 megawatts (MWs) and also encompasses operation and maintenance provisions.

UCI’s parent company is UCC Holdings, incorporated in the State of Qatar, which maintains a strategic alliance with the Turkish firm, Karpowership International.

Under the terms of the contract, GPL has agreed to pay a fee of US$0.0662 for every kilowatt-hour (kWh) as a monthly charter fee for the powership, in addition to a maintenance and operation fee of US$0.0098 per kWh, based on the electricity produced.

In preparation for the powership’s operation, which is expected to have a 96% availability rate, GPL has already paid a hefty mobilization fee of US$1 million, it said. Notably, GPL will not be required to pay a demobilization fee as per the contract. Furthermore, GPL is tasked with the supply of heavy fuel oil (HFO) necessary for running the ship’s generators.

Previously operational in Cuba, the powership is set to arrive in Guyana by May 1, 2024, with its timing dependent on weather conditions. The powership’s location will be at Everton, Berbice, and it will be integrated with the existing GPL Grid at 69 kV.

Preparatory efforts are underway by GPL to host the powership and establish its connection to the grid. Expectations are set for the powership to be up and running, contributing to the electricity grid by May 8, 2024, thus promising to support Guyana’s increased power demands for the forthcoming two years.

Development in the country is causing demand to increase at unprecedented levels. Due to the shortfall in supply, Guyana has been experiencing power instability. 

To substantially increase Guyana’s generating capacity in the long term, Guyana and an ExxonMobil-led consortium are spearheading the Gas-to-energy project, which will allow for the use of offshore natural gas to generate up to 300 MW of electricity. That project is expected to have an initial start-up in 2025, with full operations by the end of the year. 

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