ABIDJAN May 19 Ivory Coast power utility Cie plans to invest 100 billion CFA francs ($209 million) to double its customer base by 2017, Dominique Kakou, managing director of the firm part-owned by French industrial group Bouygues, said on Monday.
Cie produces electricity and has the sole licence to sell in the country.
"We have so far 1,250,000 clients. We are going to double that and have 2,700,000 clients by 2017," said Kakou.
Ivory Coast is Francophone West Africa's economic powerhouse as well as being the world's top cocoa producer and it exports power to Ghana, Burkina Faso, Togo and Mali. It plans to interconnect with Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea.
The country's electricity capacity is around 1,600 megawatts and the government aims to push it to 4,000 megawatts by 2020. But exports to its neighbours have declined in recent years as domestic demand has outpaced new power generation.
The country is recovering from a decade of political turmoil that culminated in a post-election standoff in 2010 and brief civil war in 2011 that crippled its economy.
($1 = 478.6430 CFA francs) (Reporting by Loucoumane Coulibaly; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg; Editing by Mark Potter)