Energy investment dropped

Energy investment dropped

access_time2019-05-13 13:46:27

“The biggest challenge faced by the Georgian energy sector is consumption growth, which makes  about 4.5% annually and 16% compared to 2016,” Gocha Shonia, a member of the Georgian National Energy Regulatory Commission (GNERC), says.

According to Shonia, the local generation is not keeping up with the growth and  the country has to increase electricity imports.

“In 2018, energy imports amounted to 1, 5 billion kWh, which is almost 2, 5 times more than in 2017. The main problem is the shortage of capacity - for example, five hydroelectric power plants were commissioned in 2018 with a total capacity of 65 MW. This is very small and does not solve the problem,” he explains.

The situation is complicated by the reduction of investments in the energy sector that hampers the increase in production to the required level.

“It is vitally important to depend as less as possible on the import of electricity, since it is expensive and affects the tariff both  consumer and  corporate. All this hikes the cost of production and the electricity  final price, ” Gocha Shonia notes.


Apart from that, investments should be poured in transmission lines and distribution to allow  supply of additional amounts of energy to  the regions where economic activity is higher than average throughout the country.


“For example, Batumi sees a high demand at the height of the tourist season, when it is visited by hundreds of thousands of people. The city’s infrastructure hardly copes with uninterruptible power supply and needs to be thoroughly updated, ” GNERC member notes.

In  Gocha Shonia’s words, work is underway on the law on electricity and water supply, which will become the basis for Georgia’s  energy market liberalization. 

“It is very important the Commission to  take part in the process which  has the motivated and qualified staff . We can contribute to the market liberalization and the creation of competitive conditions, ” Gocha Shonia points out. 


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