Uganda took a further step in the privatization of its electric power sector when it named the six companies who had successfully pre-qualified to bid for its generation and distribution firms. Uganda is offering 20-year contracts to run the companies but will retain ultimate ownership of the assets.
Officials said they had selected British-based Commonwealth Development Company Capital Partners, U.S. power producer and distributor Cinergy Corp., Ireland’s Electricity Supply Board International, Spanish firm Union Fenosa and South Africa’s Eskom Enterprises to bid for Uganda Electricity Distribution Company (UEDC).
Tata Power Ltd from India, Union Fenosa and Eskom Enterprises were selected to bid for Uganda Electricity Generation Company (UEGC).
Two further firms who had bid were not selected. American firm AES Corp and the British-based Marubeni Europower Ltd, a unit of Japan’s Marubeni Corp, did not pass the pre-qualification stage for bids, which will open in November.
Marubeni did not meet the technical specifications while with AES there were concerns that we might be putting our eggs in one basket,” said Emmanuel Nyirinkindi, the finance ministry’s utility reform unit director.
AES’s Uganda affiliate, AES Nile Independent Power, was licensed last year to build a $500 m dam on the river Nile.
The distribution concession had 160 000 clients and annual revenues of 80 bn Uganda shillings ($46.2 m) in 2000. The generation concession is made up of an installed capacity of 260 MW and asset value of $307 m.