$1,5bn Hwange project takes off

Natasha Kokai
Construction has started in the $1,5 billion Hwange Power Station expansion project that will add 600 megawatts and take Zimbabwe closer to exporting electricity in coming years.

The 42-month project, which had been idle for years, came to life in June when President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration gave it a kiss of life.

Zimbabwe early this year also witnessed the commissioning of the Kariba South expansion project that added 300MW to the nation grid.

The country requires about 1 400MW of electricity at peak periods, and according to Zimbabwe Power Company website, production was at 1 450MW last week.

Recently an investor was identified to undertake a 1 600MW project along the Zambezi River.

But most immediately, construction of two new units at Hwange Thermal Power – units 7 and 8 – has started with funding from China Eximbank.

Zimbabwe Power Company MD Mr Patrick Chivaura said, “A project kick off meeting was done in China from 23 to 26 July 2018. The project officially commenced on 1 August 2018.

“Excavation works and construction of the foundation of some areas is in progress. These are contractor’s camp and administration offices, electromechanical warehouse, batching plant and plant area.”

Mr Chivaura said service roads had been completed and initial surveying work for control points started at the end of June and were complete.

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