By AARON CHIYANZO
THE new government should work at establishing a robust fuel reserve in the country and making Zambia a big exporter of electricity, an energy expert, Johnstone Chikwanda has said.
Mr Chikwanda said the incoming government should also sustain the momentum regarding exploration for oil and gas in the country. He said in a statement that it was unfortunate that Zambia does not have a Strategic Petroleum Reserves Act capable of holding national fuel reserves which could last a minimum of 90 days.
Mr Chikwanda however said the Patriotic Front government made tremendous progress in positioning Zambia on the correct trajectory with regard to energy security through the ongoing energy sector reforms which were being supported by the World Bank and other Bilateral Partners.
He said the out-going administration had left a number of incomplete initiatives such as Zesco reforms, Indeni Petroleum Refinery issues, finalisation of Cost of Service Study, standardisation of fuel supply contract pricing mechanism and Petroleum Management Act.
“I have analysed the United Party for National Development (UPND) manifesto on energy a number of times and I am comfortable that it talks about cost reflective tariffs, fostering energy security and robust off grid roll out and how the energy sector will be moved to another level,” said Mr Chikwanda.
Mr Chikwanda said if the manifesto points were implemented, Zambia would become a big exporter of electricity and will establish robust fuel reserves in the country. He also encouraged the incoming government to focus on discovering oil in Zambia.