Ghana power producers call off shutdown after interim deal reached

By Christian Akorlie

ACCRA (Reuters) – Ghana’s independent power producers (IPPs) have suspended a threatened shutdown from July 1 after reaching an interim deal with the state-run Electricity Company of Ghana over arrears owed to them, the group said in a statement late on Friday.

In late May, the IPPs rejected a government proposal to restructure $1.58 billion in arrears owed them by the state as part of the West African nation’s efforts to implement a $3 billion loan deal from the International Monetary Fund aimed at addressing its worst economic crisis in a generation.

The group later warned of outages from July if its members did not receive an interim payment of 30% of the arrears to cover key operational costs and their own overdue debt service.

Under the new agreement, the power producers have received an interim payment offer with the understanding the government and Electricity Company of Ghana will use the grace period to work towards a permanent resolution to the debt issue, the group said.

If this outcome is not reached, “the IPPs will be left with no other choice than to revert to their earlier decision to shut down without any further notice,” it said.

(Writing by Alessandra Prentice; editing by Jason Neely)