The 2,400-megawatt Batoka Gorge Plant has been planned for years by the two Southern African nations, both of which are struggling with electricity shortages after a drought curbed hydropower output.
Monday 24, June 2019
(Bloomberg) --Zimbabwe and Zambia chose General Electric and Power Construction Corporation of China to build a $4 billion hydropower project straddling their border,
General Electric and Power China are in a consortium that was shortlisted in February to build the facility.
Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa, said, “Zambia and Zimbabwe have agreed on this project, we have all agreed that we give it to GE and China Power and GE together.”
“It’s critical that we move fast on that front because it’s necessary that as we industrialise that we need electricity,” added Mnangagwa.
While the project will address electricity shortages, it’s on the same river, the Zambezi, that has left the Kariba hydropower dam downstream too empty to function at full capacity.
GE stated that the Zambezi River Authority, which manages power plants on the river, had said it would appoint a final developer for the project by September and as part of the consortium, GE would have a material role in the development and execution of the project.
Matthew Nkhuwa, Zambian Energy Minister, said that the project will be based on a build-operate-transfer financing model and will not put any fiscal strain on the two nations’ governments.