Brazilian firm keen to develop Zambia’s Batoka Gorge

Shiroro Hydro-electric power plant11 November 2013, Lusaka – A Brazilian company has shown interest in developing the Batoka Gorge Hydro-power Project in Zambia, the objective being to increase the power generation capacity between Zambia and Zimbabwe.

The Batoka Hydro scheme is also expected to significantly reduce power outages and turn the two countries into net exporters of power in the region after meeting local electricity needs.

Officials from Andrade Gutierrez (AG Group) of Brazil will be in Zambia from November 18-19, 2013 to hold meetings with various stakeholders, including officials from the Zambia Development Agency.

According to a statement from Press Secretary at the Zambian embassy in Brazil, Nicky Shabolyo, the AG Group team will be led by director for the energy sector, Dieter Hopf.

The AG Group hopes to use the meetings to gain an understanding of the needs of the Zambian energy sector which they will then use in the preparation of comprehensive proposals expected to serve interests of the Zambian Government.

The company is keen on participating in the development of the Zambian infrastructure, and in particular the energy sector, where Zambia has a vast potential for hydro-power development.

The AG Group has previously participated in the construction of more than 38, 000 megawatts of installed capacity and are currently a leading consortium for the civil construction of the 11, 233 megawatt Belo Monte Hydro-electric Power Plant in Brazil, which will be the world’s third largest hydro-power plant.

AG Group started off as a construction company in 1948 in Brazil and is now established as a global investment group in more than 40 countries where it is engaged in engineering, construction, power, telecommunications, concessions, and health logistics.

The Batoka Gorge Hydro-power Project involves the construction of a dam and a hydro-power plant on the Zambezi River, about 54 kilometres downstream of the Victoria Falls. The potential capacity of the site is 1, 600 megawatts which will be shared equally between Zambia and Zimbabwe.

It is expected that the project will play a critical role in reducing the cost of doing business and enhance the competitiveness of enterprises as the region’s economy and trade continue to grow.

It is, therefore, expected that these type of projects will be critical elements in supporting social and economic activities such as industries, investment, tourism, and also fundamental in supporting and sustaining the achieved economic growth.

– Times of Zambia

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