Diplomatist Special Report - Tanzania Tanzania 2018 - Page 21

& A &A technical and fi nancial assistance for setting up projects in these domains and utilise the immense potential of renewable energy in our country. India and Tanzania decided to work together in the development and use of natural gas during the visit of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Tanzania in 2016. What kind of partnership have the two nations built in this respect in terms of their present projects and future plans? The two countries pledged to cooperate in the area of power generation by using natural gas. That is, Indian companies with fi nancial support from their government could participate as Independent Power Producers (IPP). However, due to the requirement of Tanzanian Government guarantee by IPP and inclusion of capacity charges in the tariff, we have come up with a proposal to develop power projects under the arrangement of EPC plus Financing. With the adoption of this new approach, Indian companies can now easily participate in the power generation projects in Tanzania. Also, some of the Indian fi rms have already become a part of transmission line construction projects in our country and we encourage more such organisations to invest in future projects. Tanzania faces the challenge of low access to electricity in rural and urban areas due to poor transmission infrastructure that has hindered the development of the overall economy. How will the country resolve this issue to accelerate economic and social development? The Government of Tanzania, in collaboration with International Financial Institutions, has implemented projects to consolidate the existing transmission and distribution infrastructures. Also, implementation of new transmission and distribution infrastructure has been undertaken with some projects expected to be carried out in the future as well. Some of these ongoing ventures have also witnessed the participation of Indian companies. We are encouraging more such companies to come forward under the EPC plus Financing arrangement. Tanzania has a lot of isolated regions in rural areas which cannot be connected by the national grid. As many as 176 villages have problems of accessibility, thus facing a shortage of electricity. To solve this problem, the government has come up with a rural electrifi cation programme under which we will use reliable, affordable and predictable energy for electrifi cation of the isolated villages. We also have a specifi c section in the Ministry for harnessing the various sources of renewable energy and hence supplying electricity across the country. Thus, the section is spearheading the movement of “Sustainable Energy for All”. The Government of Tanzania, in collaboration with International Financial Institutions, has implemented projects to consolidate the existing transmission and distribution infrastructures. In 2016, the state-owned power utility fi rm TANESCO highlighted Tanzania’s aim to become an energy exporter by 2018. How successful has the country been in achieving this target and what is the road ahead? In order to become a power exporter, Tanzania needs to accomplish two things. Firstly, it is needed that the country has power interconnectivity lines between Eastern and Southern African countries. In this context, we have already started the 400kV transmission line project to interconnect Tanzanian and Kenyan grids. We will soon undertake the interconnectivity project between Tanzania and Zambia. The second task is to have adequate and excess power for export at affordable and competitive tariffs. To achieve this goal, the Tanzanian government through TANESCO and in collaboration with International Financial institutions has planned to implement power generation projects by using natural gas and hydropower. Can you shed some light on the solar energy potential in Tanzania and its commercial viability? Also, what are your expectations from Re-invest Summit 2018? Tanzania has an abundant solar resource for power generation. Solar power projects will be implemented in phases depending on the penetration level of non-dispatchable renewable energy sources in the interconnected grid network. We have planned to implement a total of 250MW projects by 2021. As far as the upcoming Re-invest Summit is concerned, we will explore all available opportunities to access funds at affordable fi nancing terms (including concessionary loans) to implement the planned solar power projects. TANZANIA• 21