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N3.7trn debt threatening our operations, GenCos cry out

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N3.7trn debt threatening our operations, GenCos cry out

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Power Generation Companies (GenCos) have raised the alarm that over N3.7trn debt owed to the companies is threatening their operations, warning that failure to settle it will result in the collapse of electricity generation in the country.

Board Chairman of the companies, Col. Sani Bello (rtd.) lamented in a statement that Gencos had been left to bear the brunt of the liquidity crises in the electricity sector.

Bello said their precarious situation had been further worsened by the NERC current Multi-Year Tariff Order ((MYTO) with the payment of only 9 to 11 percent of services it rendered being paid for by its customers.

“GenCos are currently owed over two trillion Naira for power they generated, put unto the national grid, and consumed by end users. This is in addition to the over 1.7trillion naira, funding gap created in the recent supplementary MYTO order 2024 without a designated fund to fill the gap. This huge debt outlay is now greatly
inhibiting GenCos ability to meet their obligations to lenders, O&M operations, necessary maintenance, spare parts procurements, and employee-related obligations etc,” he said.

The statement added that the crises from cash liquidity are on the top burner and has reduced GenCos ability to continue to perform their obligations, thereby threatening to completely undermine the Electricity value chain.

The statement added, “Notwithstanding this and other severe difficulties the GenCos have battled with since takeover in 2013, they have kept to the terms of their contractual agreements by ramping up capacity which has largely suffered systemic constraints.

“The power generated by GenCos have continued to be consumed in full without corresponding full payment, notwithstanding the commencement of the partial activation of contracts in the NESI which took effect from July 1, 2022, the minimum remittance order, bilateral market declaration, waterfall arrangement, the risks of inflation, forex volatility with no dedicated window to cushion the effect of the forex impact, the supplementary MYTO order which leaves about 90% of GenCos monthly invoices unmet without a bankable securitisation, or financing plan. This situation has dire consequences for the GenCos and by extension the entire power
value chain.”

It also described the new order as an aberration and clear departure from existing terms of the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) guiding the contractual relationship between GenCos and the Nigeria Bulk Electricity Trading Plc (NBET).”

The Gencoes therefore warned that to continue operations, the government needed to “ensure a payment plan to settle all outstanding GenCos invoices, in line with their PPAs. Reprioitization of payments under the waterfall arrangement to give full priority to a hundred percent payment of GenCos’ invoices as at when due. A clear financing plan to backstop the exposures in the NERC’s Supplementary
Order to the MYTO and the DRO 2024.”

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