Ramallah, MINA – The Palestinian Energy Authority has completed a plan to ease Gaza’s electricity crisis once the National Consensus Government takes charge of the Gaza Strip, acting director of the Energy Authority Thafer Milhem said on Wednesday.
While Gaza needs between 400 and 450 megawatts of power, it currently has only 147 megawatt of supply, which means a deficit of 70 percent. The plan looks at reducing the deficit to 50 percent in the short term by increasing supply to between 200 to 230 megawatts, he told WAFA.
Milhem said that the issue of electricity was discussed from financial, administrative and technical points during the presence of the government in Gaza last week and it is being now discussed by the Fatah and Hamas delegations meeting in Cairo.
“We found a difficult situation in Gaza and in the energy sector in particular, which gives the government a big challenge to radically solve this matter,” he said, explaining that “for our plan to succeed, the government should be able to carry out its duties in Gaza without obstructions.”
The energy official stressed that if the reconciliation talks go as planned and the government becomes fully in charge in Gaza, the deficit in electricity supply will be reduced from 70 percent to 50 percent within a short time. But this requires rehabilitating the power grid, talking to all parties to increase the supply and to reform the bill collection and payment system to make it similar to the way it is done in the West Bank, in addition to finding the financial resources that will be generated from collecting bills and other sources.
The plan envisions buying 120 megawatt of electricity from Israel, which currently stands at 70 megawatt, raise the electricity generated by the Palestinian power plant to 80 megawatt from its current 50 megawatt and increase the supply bought from Egypt from its current 23 megawatt to 30 megawatt.(T/RS5/RS1)
Mi’raj Islamic News Agency (MINA)