PURC and GIMPA, today, February 28, 2023 inaugurated a centre of excellence in utility regulation. The Centre of Excellence in Public Utility Regulation (CEPUR) is an institutional collaboration between the PURC and GIMPA. The Centre was established to develop competencies and expertise in regulation and governance for the electricity, water, natural gas sectors, and other public utility sectors.
Present at the inauguration was the Minister of Energy, Hon. Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh (MP); who was the Guest of Honour. Also present at the inauguration was the Deputy Minister of Energy, Hon. William Owuraku (MP); the ranking member of the Mines and Energy Committee of Parliament, Hon. John Jinapor (MP); Rector of GIMPA, Professor Samuel Kwaku Bonsu; PURC Board Chairman, Ing. Ebo Quagranie; the Chairman of ERERA, Mr. Kocou Laurent Rodrigue Tossou; the Executive Secretary of PURC and members of the PURC Board, the first Executive Secretary of PURC, Mr. Stephen Adu; Pro-Rector of GIMPA, Prof. Martin Morgan Tuuli; Deans and members of the academic Board of GIMPA; Heads of the regulated Utilities, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), Media Houses, Management and staff of GIMPA and PURC.
The Centre delivers programmes leading to the award of certificates in diverse courses related to regulation and the management of the electricity, water, and natural gas sectors; and engages in cutting-edge research for investment and policy decision-making in the sectors of interest.
These programmes are intended for policymakers and regulators, utility service providers, industry players, civil society organizations, academia and members of the general public desirous of the acquisition of knowledge in the economics of regulation of the aforementioned sectors. The Centre is open to the general public.
The Guest of Honor, Dr. Mathew Opoku Prempeh (MP), expressed his appreciation and that of the Government of Ghana to the PURC and GIMPA for this initiative in creating a Centre of Excellence in Public Utility Regulation. He noted that this institutional collaboration to establish and develop competencies and expertise in economic regulation for the electricity, water, natural gas sectors, and other public utility service sectors must be hailed by all and given the necessary impetus to thrive.
Dr. Opoku Prempeh in launching the Center under the Theme: “Professionalism in the Utility Sector, the key to Africa’s Development” indicated that, the Centre is both timely and relevant. It is timely because emerging dynamics in the energy sector including the energy transition and energy security concerns require a competent and skilful workforce that is ready to help position Ghana and Africa to secure sustainable outcomes for future generations. “My Ministry has already taken the lead in developing and implementing a road map for the energy transition in Ghana. The opening of this Centre will therefore provide the needed support to develop the skills necessary to achieve Africa’s energy vision”.
According to Dr. Opoku Prempeh, today marks a significant milestone in the journey of the PURC, as it launches its Centre of Excellence with GIMPA, and the very first Ghana Utility Performance Index (GUPI) for 2021, which was developed by PURC.
The GUPI is an aggregated performance index, which is computed to assess the performance of electricity and water utilities across the operational areas of Ghana. I urge all regulated utility service providers to take this exercise seriously to aid excellence in service delivery to its customers.
In his Welcome Address the GIMPA Rector. (Prof. Samuel K. Bonsu) on behalf of the Gimpa Council, Chairman (Mr. Kofi Darko Asante) was delighted to say, the GIMPA-PURC Centre of Excellence in Public Utility Regulation (CEPUR) collaboration was the best of its kind in Africa. “The Centre will conduct high-level policy-relevant research, and encourage scholarly and public dialogues on utility regulation. The Centre will be a leading point of ideas and policies to support not only Ghana’s PURC but also similar institutions across the continent. I understand that steps have already been initiated towards making the Centre part of a global network of utilities research centres”.
According to Prof. Samuel K. Bonsu, “today, we are launching the GIMPA-PURC Centre of Excellence in Public Utility Regulation (CEPUR). I can assure all of us that GIMPA will do her best to ensure that this Centre becomes the African leader on all matters related to utilities regulation. I wish, therefore, to invite all stakeholders to join us in this venture towards success beyond our imaginations”.
On his part, the Board Chairman of PURC (Mr. Ebo B. Quagrainie), announced that PURC is 25 years old. Twenty five (25) years in multi-sector utility regulation has positioned the Commission to contribute in several ways to national development and mentor relatively new regulators across the continent. We have done this through fruitful collaboration, research, innovation and the development of regulatory systems. Indeed, in April this year, PURC will host five (5) Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of utility regulatory institutions as part of the Africa Peer Review and Learning Network.
In 2022, Ghana’s energy regulators, (PURC and Energy Commission) were ranked 4th in the African Development Bank Group’s Electricity Regulatory Index for Africa. This continent-wide achievement is an indication of the progress made by both Commissions in strengthening regulatory accountability, utility efficiency, economic and technical regulation, as well as transparency in tariff frameworks in Africa.
The Executive Secretary of PURC, took the opportunity to launch the very first Ghana Utility Performance Index (GUPI). The GUPI aims at promoting efficiency, innovaton and peer learning among utilities. He encouraged members of the public to access the document on the PURC website at www.purc.com.gh