Boston, MA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 01/16/2013 -- BMI View: A series of politically-charged electricity outages over the summer has brought power to the top of President Morsi's in-tray. The inability to assure round-the-clock electricity in peak demand periods has been exposed, and the outbreak of riots and protests accompanying these events shows that power is a hot political issue for a government that is under pressure to improve the quality of public service provision. BMI expects these issues to gain in currency in the forecast period, but the challenge of ramping up supply is immense - despite attempts to prioritise natural gas feedstock for domestic use rather than exports, the strength of demand is beyond the capability of the government to resolve quickly.
The state's strategy for the long-term energy challenge confronting Egypt will remain essentially bifurcated; on the one hand, it needs to ensure more feedstock availability for existing and planned gasfired generating capacity. This means hard choices in what Egypt does with its hydrocarbons endowment; the reality is that the argument appears to be swinging towards prioritising domestic users, including power plants, rather than generating hard currency through exports. On the other hand, the government needs to do more to increase hydro and renewables capacities, given that nuclear remains off the nearterm agenda.
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Key trends and recent developments in the Egyptian electricity market include:
- With large tracts of Egypt struck by power shortages over the summer period, the need to improve capacity has become an even more urgent policy priority for the new government of President Mohammed Morsi. Consequently, BMI expects the authorities to focus strongly on delivery of electricity generation projects over the next decade, with more investment yielding more capacity. We envisage overall capacity growing by close to 5% in 2013 to 156.1 TWh, and for a 5-6% increase rate to be sustained for the subsequent eight years. This will result in capacity of 223.7TWh by 2021.
- Overall, Egypt's power generation will rise by an annual average of around 5-6% annually in the period up to 2021, reaching 188.2TWh in 2017, before rising to 223.7TWh by the end of our forecast period. These increases will be underpinned by substantial uplifts in gas-fired power generation, which in 2015 we expect to peak at over 6% growth and then to maintain plus-5% annual growth for the rest of the forecast period (though the downside risk here is challenged feedstock availability).
- There are plans to promote waste-to-energy as a potential concept. The PPP Central Unit in Cairo has requested Chemonics of the US to carry out a feasility study on three waste-to-energy projects, with sites at Cairo, Giza and Helwan identified. These will each seek to process up to 3,500 tonnes a day of household waste into electricity.
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