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updated 6:54 AM SAST, Mar 14, 2031
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Josh Lawrence

Josh Lawrence

ZPC gets US$116m for Hwange Project in Zimbabwe

The Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) has secured US$116m from regional financial institutions towards its equity contribution for the expansion of Hwange Thermal Power Station.

ZPC’s equity contribution was one of the major conditions that were stalling the financial closure of the US $1.1bn project to be carried out by Chinese company, Sino hydro. ZPC signed a contract with Sino Hydro to expand Zimbabwe’s largest power plant by 600 MW. This comes as the country seeks to increase power generation and reduce imports.

The funding will enable ZPC to add to 2 x 300-MW generators, commonly referred to as Hwange 7 and 8 to increase power output from the country’s biggest thermal power plant.

Currently, the power station has installed capacity of 920 MW. According to ZPC acting managing director Engineer Josh Chirukuutsi, ZPC has fulfilled all the conditions precedent for financial closure. Currently they are expecting the first draw-down for the loan.

The latest development is the first unit of the Kariba South power expansion which is now delivering 150 MW onto the national grid.

The remaining unit, with capacity to produce another 150 MW, will be running by March. The projects are part of the Government’s economic recovery programme under the Zim-Asset Infrastructure and Utilities Cluster.

The contractors are already doing preparatory works. Manufacturers in China have already started the manufacturing of equipment needed for the project. All the agreements and documents are in place.

Parliament has ratified the Hwange project loan and a power purchase agreement between Sino Hydro and the Zimbabwe Electricity Transmission and Distribution Company is in place.

The projects being carried out will see Zesa cutting on power imports, which are costing the power utility. Zesa imports power from regional utilities including Hydro Cahorra Bassa and Eskom of South Africa. These imports mainly cover local supply gaps due to limited capacity.

Zimbabwe requires an average of 1 400 megawatts against an average generation of 1 000MW.

  • Published in Projects

Zambia says miners must move 30% cargo by railway

Mining firms and other bulk cargo firms in Zambia must transport at least 30% of their freight by railway, the government said on Friday, imposing a law to revive the sector.

Transport Minister Brian Mushimba told reporters there was evidence of a huge imbalance between use of the road and rail sector leading to the underperformance of railways.

Mushimba said Zambia's rail lines currently had a market share of about 5% and the remainder was handled by road transport.

"Some consequences of this imbalance include our bad road safety profile. We have had many accidents that we could have avoided," Mushimba said.

Mushimba said the excessive use of roadtransport for exports like copper, sugar and cement was damaging roads and increasing maintenance costs.

The quota system was expected to reduce the cost of doing business because railway transport was cheaper than road haulage, he said.

The government had agreed the new policy with the ZambiaChamber of Mines and individual mining firms and was confident that it would be implemented smoothly starting next month, he said. 

  • Published in News

Zambia allocates US $700m for Kalungwishi hydropower project

The Zambian government has allocated US $700m for the development of Kalungwishi hydropower plant in the Northern Province by the private sector this year. According to Finance Minister Felix Mutati, the plant is going to connect the province to Tanzania once operational.

“There are two key projects in the energy sector that are going to happen here in the Northern Province. The first one is Kalungwishi hydropower plant with an investment of about US $700m by the private sector, creating immense opportunities not only for jobs but also adding to the stability and security of the power generation,” he said.

Mutati said the project would be an inter-connector from Kasama to Nakonde which will connect the Northern power system to Tanzania. He highlighted that the project has the potential to create opportunities for more taxes if investments were placed in the area.

He further added that they want to bring in investors this year, both local and international to share opportunities. According to the minister, investors have assured government that the project will commence in August this year.

  • Published in News

Water crisis hits Cape Town tourism

The drought-induced water crisis in the Western Cape Province, which could run out of supply in April if there are no rains, has hit the key tourism sector with visitors cancelling trips, an industry official said on Friday.

  • Published in News
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