The PNG National Power Grid Backbone Infrastructure Project involving 6 provinces, was originally developed to meet the growing energy requirements of major populations, enterprise, and industrial resource concerns in the region.
This is a project of substantial national importance, affecting the livelihoods of millions of Papua New Guineans.
The project is in line with government’s desire to improve access by PNG households to reliable power supply.
The project was originally approved 6 years ago, based on transmission feasibility reports published in 2014. After an exhaustive international tender selection process, Tebian Electric Apparatus Stock Co., Ltd (TBEA) were contracted to deliver phase 1 and later, phase 2 of the project.
TBEA has a 75-year history of transformer manufacturing and 60 years of wire and cable fabricating. It is a leading enterprise in the power transmission and distribution industry, with one of the largest Research & Development export bases in the world. This is a critical project delivered by a world class contractor.
The NEC approved the project variation to add the Tari to Hides 132kV transmission and substation project in its Decision No. 138/2021, with contracts executed in July 2021 at a widely publicized event attended by the Prime Minister Hon James Marape, Minister for State Enterprises Hon William Duma, the PNG Power Chairman Moses Maladina and Board member Chey Scovell, and the former Managing Director of Kumul Consolidated Holdings (KCH) Isikeli Taureka.
This critical addition will strengthen and diversify the power supply to the network, by connecting gas generation assets in Hides to homes and businesses. This project makes absolute commercial sense to PNG Power.
The aim of the main project is to build the transmission network necessary to access cheap gas power from Hides to improve generation availability and reliability at the western end of the Highlands region to support generation from Pauanda and Yonki.
The outcome of the project will reduce generation cost and power disruption caused by generation shortfall for the upper Highlands centres including Mt. Hagen. Tari will no longer rely on expensive diesel generation, with a move to cleaner cheaper locally extracted gas-powered generation.
Ramu1 and Yonki hydro assets will have more available capacity to supply lower highlands centres, Lae and Madang.
KCH is funding the K71million project variation, through a shareholder lending arrangement to PNG Power.
This adds to over a billion kina in total project funding for this vital infrastructure.
This project is part of PNG Power’s 15-year power development plan and supports the company’s move to accessing cheaper energy production, whilst increasing transmission capacity and reliability.