Kapichira Hydro Station ready August, to spur Malawi business growth —JB

President Joyce Banda says she will commission the first 32 mega watts (MW) machine rehabilitated at Kapichira in August.

The President was saying this during a rally in Salima on Tuesday while assuring the private sector that her government is doing everything possible to improve the business environment.

“We want the private sector to operate without excuses and one thing that is challenging in terms of production is electricity and I will ensure that we operationalise more electricity generation plants. Already I will commission Kapichira I next month and II in December which is progress,” said Banda.

She insisted that the power infrastructure upgrades the country is undergoing and new generation station being established will spur more production to even target and meet demand on the export markets while easing Malawi’s electricity flows.

The First Couple enjoying the proceedings in Salima
The First Couple enjoying the proceedings in Salim

The Kapichira Hydro Power plant will have the next 32 MW power generation machine operating in December.

Malawi has an installed electricity capacity of 285 MW against demand of over 400 MW.

Minister of Energy Ibrahim Matola said Malawi government signed several agreements with companies from the People’s Republic of China to implement multimillion-dollar projects in the energy sector.

He Malawi signed an agreement with Chinese firm TBEA to construct new power transmission lines and upgrade existing ones.

“The lines to be upgraded were identified in a survey undertaken by  Chinese firm and include the Phombeya–Salima–Nkhotakota–Chatoloma line, which is to be upgraded to 220 kV at a cost of $222-million,” said Matola.

He said TBEA is to also upgrade the Nkhotakota–Chintheche–Luwinga–Bwengu line to 220 kV at a cost of
$139.9-million and the Lilongwe–Mchinji–Chipata line to 330 kV at a cost of $85-million.

“The upgrading of the transmission lines is necessary for Malawi as we prepares to connect to the Southern Africa Power Pool through Mozambique and as we pursues projects to substantially improve our electricity generation capacity,” said Matola.

On the other hand Australia’s Intra Energy is developing a coal-fired power plant and another deal with China Gezhouba is there to construct a coal-fired power plant at Kammwamba in Neno.

The first phase of the Kapichira hydropower station was commissioned in 2000.

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