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New Argentinean energy plan – the usual promises

July 20, 2007

In the face of an ever-growing energy crisis, the Argentinean government announced that it will launch a tender to build five gas-fired plants totalling 1.5GW. The single cycle plants will be built in Buenos Aires, Santa Fe and Córdoba at a cost of 3.25 billion pesos (about $1.05 billion) .

When built, the power plants will be owned and operated by Enarsa, the state-owned energy company.

We’ve heard this before, starting from 2004, when the government launched an ambitious 2004-08 energy plan that aimed to resolve Argentina’s energy shortage woes. 

Federal Planning Minister Julio De Vido admitted recently that over 2.7 billion pesos of the 11.150 billion pesos envisaged in the 2004-08 investment plan had been spent. The sum is disappointingly low.

I’m pretty certain that if one took all the power plant and energy infrastrcture projects that the government has been promising since 2004, we’d end up with pretty disappointed.

Another factor that is influencing the government energy crisis debate is presidential elections in October. President Néstor Kichner’s wife Senator Cristina Fernandez officially launched her presidential campaign Thursday.

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