Plumbing Africa August 2018 - Page 13

11 Zambia to receive USD11.75m for Ngonye solar project The European Investment Bank (EIB) has signed a USD11.75-million loan to build the Ngonye solar power plant in Zambia. The 34MW solar plant, which is aimed to generate around 70GWh of power each year, will help Zambia tackle energy shortages and diversify its electricity generation across the country. The plant will be built by the Enel Group and Zambia’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and will be located in the Lusaka South Multi-Facility Economic Zone (MFEZ). “The ongoing initiative to standardise both tendering and financing processes is creating economies of scale for solar projects across the African continent, improving economic viability and resulting in the development of solar power in smaller markets and in developing countries,” said Andrew McDowell, EIB vice-president. “After recent support for solar projects in Morocco and Kenya, the EIB is very proud to support Zambia in exploiting this abundantly available resource for the benefit of its citizens,” he added. Construction of the plant will also be supported with two loans: USD10m from the World Bank and USD12m from the International Financing Corporation (IFC), a Canada Climate Change Programme. The Ngonye solar power plant is the second Scaling Solar project under development in Zambia, the contract having been awarded in June 2016. The first project awarded under the scheme is a 45MW solar PV plant that is also near Lusaka, with construction set to start soon by French company Neoen and US giant First Solar. Scaling Solar is a World Bank Group initiative that aims to support the development of more than 1GW of solar power across Africa. It provides competitive bidding and simplified procurement for grid- tied photovoltaic power, even in smaller markets. With a huge population that is not connected to electricity, McDowell believes that by using available natural resources such as sunlight and wind, the continent can help millions of Africans to have electricity and spur economic growth. PA Source: Construction Review Online The European Investment Bank has signed a USD11.75-million loan to build the Ngonye solar power plant in Zambia. August 2018 Volume 24 I Number 6