Ewura grants firms licences to generate, supply power By Njonanje Samwel 18th February 2010 The Energy and Water Utilities Regulatory Authority (EWURA) board has granted Artumas Group and Partners (Power) Limited and Umoja Light Company licences without applying for them to facilitate execution of the Mtwara Energy Project (MEP). A statement issued yesterday in Dar es Salaam by Ewura said MEP aimed at providing reliable and affordable power services to Lindi and Mtwara regions from natural gas produced at Mnazi Bay gas fields. According to the statement, the board had considered the application for generation and distribution of power filed on April 1 and June 3, last year by the two companies. The statement said Artumas and Umoja had been involved in the generation of electricity in Mtwara since 2007 under provisional licences granted by the authority. "Under the Electricity Act, 2008 which came into effect on April 1, 2009, Artumas Group and Partners (Power) Limited and Umoja Light Company are not eligible for a licence because they had entered into an agreement with the government to develop the MEP since December 2008, which was before coming into effect of the Electricity Act. 2008," reads the statement in part. It added that the Act also gave Ewura powers to exempt an operator from the requirements of obtaining a license when the authority deemed it appropriate. The law further empowered Ewura to subject the exempted person to such terms, conditions and limitations as it deemed appropriate in the circumstances. "The board of directors has satisfied itself that the applicants are technically and financially capable of carrying out the duties and functions stipulated in the applicable laws and relevant commercial arrangements relevant to the Mtwara Energy Project and consequently granted the operators thereof with exemptions. The exemptions will last for 15 years," explained the statement, adding: "The board took into account, inter alia, the following: Applicable laws, the attractiveness of the Mtwara Energy Project, comments received from senior officials in the government, the general public, the Consumer Consultative Council, the Government Consultative Council, as well as development partners," it added. However, the statement said that the exemptions for the two firms did not in any way relieve them of normal regulatory scrutiny or other obligations as stipulated in the laws of the land.