Africa, Finance, Small Hydro

Funding awarded for Uganda small hydropower plant

The Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund (EAIF) has signed a $27m loan to Kikagati Power for a 14 MW run-of-the-river hydropower plant on the Kagera River on the border of Uganda and Tanzania.

All of the energy generated at the plant will be bought by the Uganda Electricity Transmission, Uganda’s single-buyer and transmission company, which will then sell half of the electricity to Tanzania.

The Kagera River forms a natural border between Uganda and Tanzania and the project has been driven by collaboration with both governments. Uganda has one of the world’s lowest rates of electrification, with an average national rate of 20 per cent, falling to as low as 6 per cent in rural areas.

The plant will comprise an 8.5 metre-high dam of 300 metres in length, plus three turbines of 5.5 MW each. 

London-based EAIF has invested $126m in renewable energy projects in Uganda, accounting for 138 MW.

EAIF Executive Director Emilio Cattaneo said: “The Kikagati hydro power station will strengthen the economic development foundations of Uganda and Tanzania and provide good jobs in construction and operation. This is good for Africa, for employment and poverty reduction. Green energy is powering progress.