MOZAMBIQUE: EDF and TotalEnergies qualify for the Mphanda Nkuwa mega-dam

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MOZAMBIQUE: EDF and TotalEnergies qualify for the Mphanda Nkuwa dam ©MPT

A consortium led by Électricité de France (EDF) has just been appointed by the Mozambican authorities to build the 1,500 MW Mphanda Nkuwa hydroelectric dam. This mega-project will require an investment of 4.5 billion dollars.

The Mphanda Nkuwa hydroelectric project is undergoing a new development. The Mozambican Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy (MIREME), through the Mphanda Nkuwa Hydroelectric Project Implementation Office (GMNK), has appointed the consortium responsible for developing this hydroelectric scheme on the Zambezi River. It is made up of the French groups TotalEnergies and Électricité de France (EDF), and the Japanese companies Sumitomo Corporation and Kansai Electric Power.

According to Mireme, the choice of this consortium “is the result of the evaluation of the technical, economic and financial proposals validated by the committee (…) made up of Electricidade de Moçambique (EDM), Hidroeléctrica de Cahora Bassa (HCB), the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the Ministry of Land and Environment, the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security, and the Bank of Mozambique”.

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In addition to the preferred bidder, the consortium led by ETC Holdings and including Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO), CECOT (a subsidiary of Portugal’s Mota-Engil Group) and PetroSA (a subsidiary of South Africa’s Central Energy Fund), has been named as the reserve bidder. The appointment of the preferred bidder means that negotiations can now begin with a view to signing the concession agreements for the Mphanda Nkuwa hydroelectric project.

The project involves the construction of a hydroelectric dam on the Zambezi River in the Marara district. Its 1,500 MW power station will be located 60 km downstream of the Cahora Bassa dam, which has a capacity of 2,075 MW. The reservoir will be located 70 km upstream of the town of Tete, the capital of the province of the same name. A transmission system comprising 1,300 km of 550 kV high-voltage direct current line will also be built between Cataxia and the Mozambican capital Maputo.

Construction of the Mphanda Nkuwa dam and power station will require an investment of 4.5 billion dollars. Although contested for its environmental and social impact, the project is supported by the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector financing arm of the World Bank Group. Maputo hopes to start work in 2024.

Jean Marie Takouleu


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