Namibia to assist Zimbabwean power utility

via Namibia to assist Zimbabwean power utility  BDlive by Felix Njini  NOVEMBER 07 2013

Namibia Power Corporation (NamPower) has said it will loan funds to Zimbabwe’s power utility to refurbish and raise generation capacity of two thermal power plants in return for guaranteed supplies of electricity.

NamPower had agreed to help upgrade the facilities to secure guaranteed electricity until 2018 when Kudu — a $1.2bn, 800MW gas-to-power plant it was developing — should start operating, MD Paulinus Shilamba said this week. He declined to say how much it would lend.

Namibia, the world’s biggest miner of offshore diamonds and the fifth-largest uranium producer, imported about 53% of its electricity needs from neighbouring countries, NamPower said in its 2012 annual report.

“We have identified an investment opportunity at the two power stations, which we also want to form part of our short-term critical supply project,” Mr Shilamba. “We have a strong balance sheet and are able to finance a deal of this nature.”

Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC), the Harare-based electricity generation unit of the country’s Zesa Holdings utility, plans to raise generation capacity at the plant in Harare to 120MW from 50MW. It also aims to raise capacity at the plant in Bulawayo to 90MW from 30MW.

One megawatt of capacity is enough to supply 2,000 average European homes.

ZPC needed $180m to boost generation capacity at the two power plants, the company said. Zesa supplies about 1,100MW to Zimbabwe, about half the 2,200MW needed to avoid blackouts, it says on its website.

Preliminary investigations that NamPower had conducted showed the Zimbabwean “power stations are not in bad shape and with minimal investment can be brought into operation”, Mr Shilamba said. NamPower wanted the deal structured along a 2007 agreement under which it loaned Zesa $40m to refurbish four units at the coal-fired Hwange plant, securing supplies of 150MW over five years.

“Our deal with Zesa over Hwange power station is ending in 2014 and our expectation is that it should be the benchmark if we finalise an agreement to loan them money to refurbish the two stations,” Mr Shilamba said.

He would disclose how much power the Namibian utility plans to secure from Zimbabwe.

“It has to be a win-win deal for both of us,” Mr Shilamba said.

“If we invest money it means we expect to benefit.”




  • comment-avatar

    Namibia is planning for the future, they are already developing some power plants and at the moment they don’t even have load shedding. Our government was busy taking farms and insulting Bush and Blair and look where we are right now?

  • comment-avatar

    These are people who “died” for their country too. Now they are dying to serve their people and exploiting opportunities presenting themselves through a visionless dictator who brags of possessing many degrees and a cabinet of “doctors” who deliver underdevelopment, poverty and uselessness.

    See how they are being contolled by short, ugly Chinese? This is a farce of an administration.

    Go Namibia go. The Nampower management team actually have their own jet. May be Namibia could be an example of African vision and success story. When Zuma said “do not think like an African…This is not some Chirundu to Beitbridge road…This is Johannesburg…” the small minds were up against him. Nxaaa

  • comment-avatar

    @ SADC and Gora Zimbabwe will never survive in isolation and Namibia will never be alone , this is a smooth deal which will benefit both countries in our region without begging Westerns . Namibia is not doing a favour to Zimbabwe , this is an economically deal , i am therefore worried about some of your comments which are totally out of vision , think twice guys Zimbabwe will never survive in isolation we need to work together with other countries solely for development thats why there is the word import and export .If we go west you complain , now you complain about China , we work together with our neighbours like Namibia , Zambia etc you complain again , please we Zimbabweans have got brians dont just fit yourself in here , where do you come from .

  • comment-avatar
    msizeni silwelani 10 years ago

    If the deal is followed to the book, i see nothing wrong. Electricity entities in SA and Moza went into such a deal and the result has been that the later has been doing well in providing power to its people.

    Zesa can handover a power station to a private investor, the operator in turn produces electricity based on the estimated production capacity of the station, of which an excess, the investor is allowed to export or sell within the country at an extra cost to the local power company.