The South African Ministers for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation and of Electricity have met Mozambique’s Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy in the search for solutions to the lack of electricity that South Africa is facing.
“We have a deficit of 6,000 megawatts of energy and we would like to explore all the options available from Mozambique,” said Maropene Ramokgopa and Kgosientsho Ramokgopa in a statement released by the Mozambican Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy (MIREME).
“Each megawatt that is available will make an important contribution to reducing the deficit that has affected our country and which has led to blackouts, seriously affecting our economy,” said Maropene during the talks.
Carlos Zacarias, Mozambican Minister for Mineral Resources and Energy, assured the visiting ministers “of Mozambique’s availability to work together with South Africa, promising to evaluate short-term solutions”, the MIREME statement reads.
The parties will meet again this month to assess possibilities for cooperation.
“We are sure that Mozambique and South Africa can raise the regional energy sector to a higher level, exploring the potential and strengthening the interconnection infrastructure,” Minister Zacarias asserted.
South Africa is already, under a purchase agreement that runs until 2029, the main buyer of electricity from the Cahora Bassa hydroelectric power plant in central Mozambique, at 2,075 MW capacity the largest in Southern Africa.
“The country [South Africa] is facing an unprecedented energy crisis and Mozambique, with its vast resources including renewable sources (solar, water, wind, biomass) and natural gas, is positioned as a solution for the neighbouring country,” MIREME adds.
Among several ongoing projects, the most important is the 450 MW Temane Thermal Power Plant, the largest post-independence power plant, which uses natural gas from Pande and Temane.
“This project will increase installed capacity to 975 MW from 2014 to 2024 and, taking into account an increase in [domestic] demand of 260 MW in the same period, Mozambique should have around 700 MW of surplus after meeting domestic needs,” MIREME stresses.
In the medium and long term, the Mphanda Nkuwa hydroelectric project – still on paper – will initially supply up to 1500 MW of electricity, with potential for another 900 MW in a second phase.
MIREME announced on Friday that a consortium led by Eletricidade de França and which includes Total as a “preferred bidder”, will develop the Mphanda Nkuwa project, budgeted at US$4.5 billion.