Press Release

General Manager cites progress in CLSG project

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Monday, September 18, 2017, Abidjan, CI – The General Manager of the TRANSCO CLSG Mohammed M. Sherif says immense progress has been made in the implementation of the CLSG project.

“Mr. Chairman and members of the Board of Directors, I am pleased to report to you today progress we’ve made in the implementation of the CLSG interconnection project. Since the last Board meeting of June in Liberia, we have made significant progress in the project implementation,” the Genera Manager said in his statement at the 15th Board of Directors meeting in Abidjan.

PROGRESS ON THE EPC CONTRACTS

Mr. Sherif recognized the support of the donors and authorities in the CLSG countries including Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea towards making the CLSG project implementation a milestone. The General Manager disclosed that TRANSCO CLSG has worked diligently to conclude the awarding of EPC contracts for the transmission line and substations in the four countries.

Mr. Sherif added: “Out of the total of 13 contracts, we have signed eight, with five of those now effective. Those EPC contractors have already mobilized resources and have begun construction activities including engineering studies, aerial surveys and soil testing in the four CLSG countries. Factory Tests for the key equipment, including conductors and towers have been successfully launched and will continue to be performed all along this last quarter of 2017.”

ESMP & RAP ACTIVITIES

Mr. Sherif also disclosed that significant progress in the implementation of the Environmental and Social Management Plan (ESMP) and the Resettlement Action Plan (RAP) which remain one of the critical activities to the successful implementation of the CLSG project, has been made. According to him, following the approval of the compensation strategy by the management of TRANSCO CLSG and donors, consultancy firms were hired to conduct the RAP and ESMP data consolidation in the transmission line final corridor before any payment is made to people affected by the project (PAPs).

He said all the EPC contractors, particularly those whose contracts are effective are now preparing the ESMP Construction Documents which will be used to mitigate environmental, health, hygiene, safety and social negative impacts during the project implementation.

Still on the environmental front, the General Manager said the implementation of the Reforestation Program, the Environmental Monitoring Program and the RAP Monitoring Program has been scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2017. The Operational Action Plan and MoU for these components were adopted by TRANSCO CLSG and the National Monitoring Committees in July and August 2017 respectively. All periodical meetings of the NMC have been held reflecting the permanent awareness of the four governments on this critical component of the project.

PROGRESS UPDATES ON AUDITS ASSIGNMENTS

On the audit fronts, the General Manager said significant progress has been made on the Internal and external audit assignments. He said the Internal Auditor is currently auditing the implementation and risk management of the CLSG Project and he has prepared an annual internal audit statement that gives an overall opinion on the adequacy of the systems of internal controls, risk management and governance at TRANSCO CLSG.

On external audit, the General Manager said the Management of the World Bank on August 28, 2017 finally approved the decision to provide an additional financing to fill the financing gaps in Liberia and Sierra Leone. Negotiations between the World Bank and authorities in Liberia and Sierra Leone along with TRANSCO CLSG have been scheduled for October 2 – 4, 2017. Following these negotiations, the World bank management will submit to the Board of the World Bank for final approval before the financing agreement can be signed.

While commending the Board committee on Audit and Good Governance for the tremendous work of endorsing the 2016 external audit report on Friday September 15, 2017,  the General Manager urged the Chairman and members of the Board to approve the external audit report for 2016, as this is a critical step in filling the financing gaps of the CLSG project.

“We are very confident that with the same level of support and commitment from you, our donors, and other key stakeholders, we will achieve our goal. We recognize your effort in all this. We owe gratitude to you for your support towards the implementation of the CLSG interconnection project. Your willingness is clearly demonstrated by the invaluable support shown to TRANSCO CLSG by governments and the national utilities in the CLSG countries.”

Mr. Sherif also thanked the Governments of Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, donors and other key partners for their unwavering support and commitment to the CLSG project. “We remain confident that with the same support, the challenges ahead are far lesser.”

The General Manager also acknowledged the resilience and the efforts of his team which has made it possible to achieve key milestones towards project implementation.

 

TRANSCO CLSG Board Sympathizes with Sierra Leone

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Monday, September 18, 2017, Abidjan, CI – The Board of Directors of TRANSCO CLSG has expressed its deepest condolences to President Ernest Bai Koroma and the people of Sierra Leone, for the devastating mudslides and flooding that killed more than 300 people in the country’s capital.

During its 15th Board meeting today in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, the Chairman of the Board Mr. Amidou Traore expressed sadness for the loss of lives and called on the people of Sierra Leone to remain strong in the wake of the tragedy.

The Board Chairman said he and his colleagues were deeply saddened to learn of the terrible flooding and landslides in Freetown. “Our thoughts and prayers are with you especially to those who lost loved ones and those whose homes and livelihoods have been affected by this incident.”

The unprecedented death toll from the landslide and flooding incident affected areas of Regent, Kamayama, Pentagon, George Brook, etc on the 14th August 2017. The Board observed a minute of silence during the meeting for the victims.

TRANSCO CLSG signs EPC Contracts for substations in Liberia

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Friday, September 15, 2017, Abidjan, CI – The Management of TRANSCO CLSG today signed another milestone EPC contract with the JV SIEYUAN & NORTHEAST CHINA INTERNATIONAL ELECTRIC POWER CORPORATION (NEIE) for the design, supply, installation and commissioning of 225Kv Sub stations in Liberia.

The General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG Mohammed M. Sherif signed the contract along with Lu Zhiguo, JV SIEYUAN & NEIE West Africa Representative for the sub stations in Yekepa, Buchanan, Monrovia and Mano.

 

TRANSCO CLSG Conducts Factory Acceptance Tests in Bahrain, India

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Cable being tested

Abidjan CI – September 11, 2017: TRANSCO CLSG, the regional transmission company responsible for interconnecting Cote d’Ivoire with Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea is participating in a Factory Acceptance Test (FAT) for the Conductors and Earthing Cables in Bahrain and India respectively.

The Director of the CLSG project implementation unit, Mr. Etienne Bailly is leading a three-man TRANSCO CLSG delegation of engineers to the two countries to ensure the equipment including cables for the construction of the transmission line contract for Lot 4 of the 225Kv Transmission Line (TL) from Bikongor to Bumbuna and Yiben in Sierra Leone, meet quality standards.

The Factory Acceptance Test (FAT) is a major project milestone in the CLSG project implementation in which the delegation will ensure the equipment design and manufacturing meets the contract or Purchase Order (P.O.) specifications.

The FAT is being jointly conducted by TRANSCO CLSG in collaboration with the responsible EPC contractors, KALPATARU, which invited TRANSCO CLSG to inspect the equipment before they are shipped to the construction site in Sierra Leone.

 

GM Seeks Coordination with OMVG Project

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The General Manager and delegation traveled to Dakar, Senegal on August 30, 2017 to meet and discuss the CLSG and the OMVG interconnection projects, with the High Commissioner of OMVG, El Hadj Lansana Fofana.

Like the CLSG project, the development objective of the OMVG for Africa is to enable electricity trade between the Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, and Senegal. The project will expand the West African power pool (WAPP) transmission network.

In the courtesy meeting, Mr. Mohammed M. Sherif sought collaboration with the OMVG interconnection project. He acknowledged that both TRANSCO CLSG and OMVG are working towards the same goal to connect light to the lives of millions of citizens in the sub region, therefore the need to collaborate on the technical and procurement fronts is key.

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During the meeting, Mr. Sherif provided updates on the implementation of the CLSG interconnection project.

In response, the High Commission of OMVG extoled his counterpart for the visit and for sharing updates related to the CLSG project implementation. He assured TRANSCO CLSG his company’s full cooperation in the process.

A technical team meeting on project implementation was held on Thursday, August 31, 2017 with the OMVG and TRANSCO CLSG project implementation units.

TRANSCO CLSG Director of PIU, Mr. Entienne Bailly, along with the Engineering Coordinator Erik Achi and the Senior Procurement and Contract Managament Specialist Mohamed Keita presented. Representative of the TRACTEBEL Belgium (Owner’s Engineer for TRANSCO CLSG) also attended the meeting.

GM wants WAPP intervene in accelerating electricity distribution

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Abidjan, CI – September 6, 2017: The General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG is calling on the West African Power Pool (WAPP) to play a coordinating role to ensure an effective implementation of the rural electrification component of the CLSG project. This as the General Manager asserted will further ensure timely distribution of electricity to the citizens of the CLSG countries.

During a courtesy call on the Secretary General of WAPP, Mr. Siengui Appolinaire KI, in Cotonou, Benin on Monday, August 28, 2017, Mr. Mohammed M. Sherif sought WAPP intervention in pushing member countries of the CLSG to ensure their national utilities are fully ready to distribute the electricity as the TRANSCO CLSG transmission line and sub stations come online. He said there is a need for WAPP to take leadership in ensuring a synchronized approach to distributing electricity to the citizens in the four countries.

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He called for the national utilities to make this as part of their agenda, maintaining that national utility of each CLSG countries must put in place a mechanism to ensure seamless and timely distribution of electricity. Mr. Sherif wants member countries to include in their respective national strategies connection to the TRANSCO CLSG transmission line.

The General Manager also informed told the SG that donors recognized the important role WAPP can play, and that WAPP’s involvement will also accelerate the rural electrification component of the project.

“We want WAPP to challenge member countries, pushing them to ensure the distribution process is carried out timely for our people to benefit,” the General Manager urged the WAPP Secretary General.

On the Linsan Substation, the General Manager said the substation will be taken over and financed by OMVG project, a process that is being coordinated by WAPP. In view of this, the General Manager pleaded with the Secretary General of WAPP to coordinate activities between TRANSCO CLSG and OMVG to seamlessly move the process forward.

Mr. Sherif called on WAPP to play a leadership role for a broader coordination and convene a meeting with the OMVG, the Guinean authorities and TRANSCO CLSG to agree on the strategy of moving forward.

In response, the Secretary General praised the leadership of TRANSCO CLSG for achieving key milestones in the project implementation. He thanked the General Manager and delegation for the visit. The SG said he felt elated by the visit and assured Mr. Sherif and his team of WAPP’s fullest commitment to the CLSG project. He also assured the TRANSCO CLSG that WAPP will consider the General Manager’s plead and make sure it is carried out.

 

CLSG Project records strong progress

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The construction phase of the CLSG interconnection project is showing strong progress in Liberia and Sierra Leone as key activities are already underway.

In Liberia, an Aircraft has been hired and brought in by two EPC Contractors, Saudi Arabia based NATIONAL CONTRACTING COMPANY LTD and JV Electno-Eiffage (Spanish and French based) to conduct LIDAR survey of the transmission line, Lot 1 from Yekepa to Buchanan and Lot 2 from Buchanan to Mano via Monrovia.

PROJECT STATUS LIBERIA

The aircraft has been inspected by the Liberia Civil Aviation Authority and has commenced the survey of the transmission line route. The survey allows mapping to determine both natural and man-made environments with accuracy, precision, and flexibility.

LIDAR stands for Light Detection and Ranging and is a remote sensing method that uses light in the form of a pulsed laser to measure ranges (variable distances) to the Earth. These light pulses, combined with other data recorded by the airborne system generate precise, three-dimensional information about the shape of the Earth and its surface characteristics.

A LIDAR instrument principally consists of a laser, a scanner, and a specialized GPS receiver. Airplanes and helicopters are the most commonly used equipment for acquiring LIDAR data over broad areas. LIDAR typically uses a near-infrared laser to map the land as well water-penetrating green light to measure seafloor and riverbed elevations.

PROJECT UPDATE SIERRA LEONE

In Sierra Leone, one of the EPC Contractors, KALPATARU has begun intensive soil testing within the transmission line corridors. They have dug several trial pits, an excavation of the ground in order to study the composition and structure of the subsurface.

Trial pits are usually dug during a site investigation, a soil survey or a geological survey. Trial pits are dug before the construction. They are dug to determine the geology and the water table of that site.

 

General Manager meets ECOWAS, WAPP, OMVG officials during tour

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As part of the implementation of the CLSG project, the General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG will be holding a two-day high-level meeting with the Secretary General and other relevant authorities of the West African Power Pool (WAPP) during a courtesy visit in Cotonou, Benin from August 27 – to 29th, 2017.

Mr. Mohammed M. Sherif, accompanied by the Director the CLSG project implementation, Etienne Bailly will discuss progress made in the CLSG project implementation as well as challenges in the process.

The meeting will discuss the various issues including the construction phase of the CLSG project, the Linsan (Guinea) sub station project, the WAPP regional project coordination platform with the CLSG project and the rural electrification program, which remains one of the key components of the CLSG project.

The TRANSCO CLSG General Manager will later travel to Dakar, Senegal on August 30, 2017 to hold meeting with the High Commissioner and the project implementation unit as well as the Owner’s engineer of the Organisation pour la Mise en Valeur du fleuve Gambie (the Gambia River Basin Development Organization) (OMVG) Interconnection Project OMVG.

Like the CLSG project, the development objective of the OMVG for Africa is to enable electricity trade between the Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, and Senegal. The project will extend the West African power pool (WAPP) transmission network.

The General Manager concludes his tour in Abuja, Nigeria with a courtesy call on the President of the ECOWAS Commission.

 

TRANSCO CLSG Consoles Sierra Leone

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The Management of TRANSCO CLSG has extended a message of condolence to the government and people of Sierra Leone over the disaster caused by a landslide in the Regent region of the country.

The message was conveyed to the Honorable Minister of Energy of Sierra Leone and Mr. Ing Alhajii TIMBO, Director of TRANSCO CLSG Board of Directors (EDSA), through a letter delivered on Thursday.

“It is with great distress and sadness that we received the news about the worst hit of the devastating mudslide in Sierra Leone during the last weekend, which caused such death toll and missing people in the affected areas of the country,” the letter signed by the General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG, Mohammed M Sherif said.

“On behalf of TRANSCO CLSG, I would like to convey our heartfelt condolences to the Government and the people of Sierra Leone who are undergoing the tragic and traumatic experiences due to the loss of hundreds of lives and the disappearance of numerous people. Please convey our expression of deepest sympathy and solidarity to the grieving families of the victims and all those affected by this calamity.”

TRANSCO CLSG Management recognizes that while “your country and people are undergoing this serious crisis, we pray that they be comforted to overcome the catastrophic impact of this natural disaster and alleviate the sufferings of the affected victims in your country.”

The letter concludes: “We sincerely pray to Almighty God to bestow mercy on all those who are suffering now and grant divine comfort and consolation to the bereaved families at this time of their immense trial and grief.”

 

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: GM Underscores Huge benefits of CLSG Project

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Abidjan, CI, Tuesday, July 25, 2017: The development of the CLSG interconnection project will support local economies, creates jobs, and moves the CLSG countries toward a more reliable energy future, the General Manager of TRANSCO CLSG, Mohammed M. Sherif says in an exclusive interview with the TRANSCO CLSG Newsletter team in Monrovia.

According to Mr. Sherif, the CLSG project comes with substantial benefits for the national economies and local communities in Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. In addition to direct benefits, including new jobs, lower electricity costs, etc, Mr. Sherif said the project will stimulate economic growth and sharply reduce the countries’ current power deficit and reduce significantly the present use of expensive power generation.

“The benefit is so huge. It cut across health education, agriculture, etc. Students going to school don’t have to worry any longer about studying in the dark, or with candle lights. Once there is affordable and reliable electricity in town, you will have accessibility, reliability and the enhancement of education will be huge,” Mr. Sherif said.

The General Manager added: “Health facilities will operate 24-hour services to the public; farm to market production will be greatly enhanced. Farmers will be able to produce and preserve their crops with the affordable electricity that will be available to them. The economic impact will be very huge in terms of production, manufacturing, small business activities. Cost of production will be cut down and there will be more employment.”

The CLSG project will support economic growth and job creation as well as enhance the competitiveness of goods both regionally and internationally. According to Mr. Sherif, during the two-year construction period, the CLSG project team will give recruitment preference to residents living in the area near the project. This increase in employment will stimulate the local economy, leading to investment in new and existing businesses and additional job opportunities for residents.

Mr. Sherif said the project will particularly benefits the residents and economies of local communities near the project sites. New jobs including primarily unskilled and semi-skilled, will be created. In addition to improving the local economy, Mr. Sherif said, TRANSCO CLSG is committed to preserving the heritage and cultures of nearby villages, especially those in the line corridors.

He said TRANSCO CLSG is working with affected communities to help identify actions needed to fulfill those commitments.

An estimated 24 million people will benefit from the project when it is completed and commissioned in 2019.

TRANSCO CLSG is a transmission company with headquarters based in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire. The company is responsible for the construction of the 225kva transmission line, connecting Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.