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Ghana to Use Next Millennium Challenge Funding on Energy

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Feb. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Ghana, West Africa’s second-biggest economy, plans to use the second tranche of funding from the U.S. Millennium Challenge Corp. to boost investments in energy production.

“We are looking at total energy supply, from gas, electricity, solar to wind energy,” Martin Eson-Benjamin, chief executive officer of the Millennium Development Authority, the aid agency’s local unit, said by phone from Accra, the capital, yesterday.

Ghana’s first funding tranche, worth $547 million, ended this week with the inauguration of a 14-kilometer (8.7-mile) highway in the city by President John Atta Mills. Funds were used for other infrastructure and agriculture projects in the world’s second-biggest cocoa producer.

Ghana plans to boost electricity production to 3,300 megawatts by the end of 2013 from 1,800 megawatts in 2009, Mills said yesterday.

Studies are being conducted to decide on new energy projects and a proposal will be sent to the U.S. agency, which agreed on Ghana’s second deal in January 2011, said Eson-Benjamin.

The amount will be “determined based on studies that will be conducted,” said Daniel Yohannes, chief executive officer of the MCC, in an interview in capital, Accra, Feb. 14.

Africa accounts for about 70 percent of the corporation’s total funding of $5.2 billion, with 11 countries at various stages of completion of their funding plans, he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ekow Dontoh in Accra at edontoh@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Emily Bowers at ebowers1@bloomberg.net

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