Aug 22, 2012
SA Cabinet approves Grand Inga power treaty with DRCBack
SECURITY|Africa|Botswana Power Corporation|CoAL|Eskom|Flow|Hydropower|Nuclear|PROJECT|Projects|Renewable Energy|Renewable-Energy|Security|System|Africa|Europe|Angola|Congo|Democratic Republic Of Congo|DRC|Egypt|Mozambique|Namibia|Nigeria|South Africa|Zambia|Security|Cross-border Energy Project|Energy|Energy Infrastructure|Flow|Nuclear|Potential Energy|Power Generation|Power-generation|Renewable Energy|Security|Congo River|Brian Dames|Dipuo Peters|Infrastructure|Inga II|Inga III|Jacob Zuma|Jimmy Manyi|Joseph Kabila|Power|Security
© Reuse this
The project, which would be developed on the Congo river in several standalone phases, could eventually yield as much as 40 000 MW of capacity.
It would allow for the two countries to jointly explore different economically feasible options for the development of what could emerge as the largest-ever cross-border energy project undertaken in the Southern African Development Community (SADC).
Cabinet said the two countries would also seek support for the initiative from other African countries, especially from its partners in the SADC region.
The Congo river had been identified as a major potential energy source more than four decades ago, but had failed to move beyond the Inga I and Inga II, which were commissioned in the 1970s and 1980s.
Prior to the treaty process, the next significant phase, dubbed Inga III, was meant to have been developed by an entity known as Westcor, whose shareholders included the DRC’s Société Nationale d'Électricité Société a Responsibilité Limitée (SNEL); ENE, of Angola; NamPower, of Namibia; the Botswana Power Corporation; and South Africa’s Eskom.
But progress on the proposed 3 500 MW to 5 000 MW project stalled, reportedly owing to DRC disquiet over some of the structural arrangements. The treaty was designed to reinitiate the process under a regime more acceptable to the host country.
Cabinet spokesperson Jimmy Manyi said that “different times” and “different dynamics” had led to previous failures to advance the project, but that the South Africa government was confident of delivering this time around.
“The project will form part of South Africa’s government strategy to promote renewable energy in the region, contribute to a reduction of carbon emissions, ensure security of supply and develop energy infrastructure on the continent and the SADC region in particular,” Manyi added.
A technical committee comprising senior officials from both countries drafted the formal accord. The drafting team was established following the signing, in November 2011, of a Grand Inga memorandum of understanding at a ceremony presided over by Presidents Jacob Zuma and Joseph Kabila.
The treaty was also viewed as a precursor to the initiation of negotiations on an implementation agreement, which South Africa hoped would begin before year-end.
Energy Minister Dipuo Peters indicated recently that she was considering the issuance of Ministerial determinations to open the way for further power generation projects in line with the Integrated Resource Plan for electricity.
The plan, which was unveiled in early 2011, envisaged the integration of 2 609 MW of imported hydroelectric power into South Africa’s power mix between 2021 and 2023. This initial capacity is expected to flow from countries such as Zambia and Mozambique. However, both Zuma and Peters have indicated that Grand Inga is receiving priority attention.
It is understood that Eskom and SNEL would also enter into an agreement to facilitate the execution of the project.
Eskom CEO Brian Dames said recently that initiatives were under way for the creation of a high-voltage “super grid” across Southern Africa by 2030. Such a system would be able to integrate renewable energy, nuclear, coal, gas and hydropower.
“We think the Southern African electrical system should leverage the hydro on the north [of the continent] all the way to the Congo . . . and leverage the gas fields of the east and the west,” Dames stated.
Should it eventually proceed, Grand Inga could be developed into an emission-free-power hub, almost equal in size to South Africa’s current installed base. In fact, South Africa’s newly released National Development Plan 2030 argues that the project could even provide power, through interconnecting links, to southern Europe.
To reach its potential, three major African interconnection projects would be required: the northern highway, between Inga and Egypt; the southern highway, between Inga and South Africa; and the western highway, between Inga and Nigeria.
Edited by: Creamer Media Reporter© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Electricity News
Updated 2 hours 7 minutes ago State-owned power utility Eskom on Monday said it has successfully achieved the first oil fire for Unit 6, the first of the Medupi boilers at the developing power station in Limpopo. With the first oil fire, using liquefied petroleum gas and fuel oil, now achieved,...
Updated 4 hours ago In a bid to progress its contentious nuclear build programme and increase the contribution of nuclear energy to the country’s overall energy mix, government reiterates it is in talks with various prospective nuclear vendors over nuclear technologies that could...
Updated 5 minutes ago Recent accidents involving heavy vehicles on Gauteng’s roads should make the local freight industry question the value of self-regulation, Gauteng Roads and Transport MEC Dr Ismail Vadi said on Monday. Speaking at the Gauteng Freight Summit, in Boksburg, he referred...
Updated 2 hours 29 minutes ago State-owned power utility Eskom on Monday said it has successfully achieved the first oil fire for Unit 6, the first of the Medupi boilers at the developing power station in Limpopo. With the first oil fire, using liquefied petroleum gas and fuel oil, now achieved,...
Updated 2 hours 52 minutes ago After a R1.5-billion impairment charge resulted in Hulamin reporting negative earnings per share (EPS) of 422c for the 2013 financial year, the aluminium supplier said on Monday that EPS and headline earnings per share for the 2014 financial year were expected to...
Recent Research Reports
Defence 2014: A review of South Africa's defence industry (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Defence 2014 report examines South Africa’s defence industry, with particular focus on the key participants in the sector, the innovations that have come out of the sector, local and export demand, South Africa’s controversial multibillion-rand...
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
This Week's Magazine
The broad-based black economic-empowerment (BBBEE) alignment process in the con-struction sector has begun, dur-ing which the sector codes of the Construction Sector Charter Council (CSCC) will be aligned with the revised Codes of Good Practice (CoGP), which come...
It is second time lucky for Toby Venter. Ten years ago he negotiated to buy the Kyalami racetrack, but “the deal did not materialise”.
Environmental solutions company I-Cat started construction work on its R22-million, 1 949 m2 environmentally sustainable office and warehouse facility, commissioned by I-CAT Environmental Solutions, at a launch event in October. The new sustainable I-CAT campus,...
Effective file synchronisation and sharing across an organisation’s structures can provide the basis for robust mobile-device and document management while maintaining proper backup, version control and content distribution. These are the lessons learned by complex...
Hotel group Carlson Rezidor currently holds the largest hotel pipeline in Africa with 30 hotels and 6 300 rooms under development. The hotel group develops and operates Radisson Blu in the upper upscale segment and Park Inn by Radisson in the mid-market segment. With...