African bank advances funds for two Zambia hydro projects

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has signed a US$1.2 million grant to Zambia for financing advisory services for the 120-MW Itezhi-Tezhi and the 360-MW Kariba North Bank Extension hydroelectric projects.

AfDB said it signed the agreement June 12 with Zambia Electricity Supply Corp. (ZESCO). The advisory services are to prepare financial and other strategies needed to mobilize financing for the projects. The advisers also are to find sources of financing.

AfDB Vice President Joseph Eichenberger said growing economies of Zambia and the region are being constrained by shortages of electricity. (HNN 6/12/08)

�This must be done as a matter of urgency,� Eichenberger said. �We’re in a hurry to see that the project is executed. A continued shortage of power will negatively affect economic growth in Zambia and the Southern African Development Community.�

A joint venture of ZESCO and Tata Africa Holdings (Pty) of South Africa took bids in May for construction of Itezhi-Tezhi on the Kafue River. (HNN 5/14/08) ZESCO and Tata Africa, a subsidiary of India’s Tata Group, have said the project should be commissioned by June 2012.

ZESCO also is developing Kariba North Bank Extension, expected to be completed in mid-2012 on the Zambezi River. The existing 600-MW Kariba North Bank project is being refurbished to add another 120 MW.

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