of Zambia by mitia on 6/20/13
By MAIMBOLWA MULIKELELA –
ZESCO plans to double its electricity generation capacity to 2.800 megawatts in the next five years aimed at supporting increased economic activities arising manly from the mining industry.
Zesco director transmission Christopher Mubemba said the utility company plans to double its electricity generation capacity to 2,800 megawatts in the next five to six years to ensure adequate supply of power and to meet the current demand.
Speaking at the ongoing Mining and Energy conference in Lusaka yesterday, Mr Mubemba said: “We plan to double the electricity generation capacity in the next five to six years in the generation and transmission projects.”
Mr Mubemba said the firm would invest about KR3.6 billion in the generation and transmission projects this year, adding that it plans to spend about US$5.3 billion in the next five years.
“We have committed KR3.6 billion for this financial year and we intend to spend about $5.3 billion over the next five years,” Mr Mubemba said
He said the country had recorded significant growth in last few years mainly driven by investment in the mining industry, saying the development would only be sustained by increased output in the power generation.
Zambia’s electricity demand stood at 1,650 megawatts which has exceeded the country’s generation capacity of about 250 megawatts.
He said projects yet to be completed include the $2 billion Kafue Gorge Lower power, the Kariba North Bank project worth US$420 million and the $120 million Itezhi Tezhi hydro electric project, which would help the company double its capacity once they come on stream.
He said in the last 50 years North-Western Province has had no connection to the national grid adding that, the province operated mostly on thermal power.
“We have a project right now to connect North-Western Province to the grid and of course, it will increase access, improve the quality and capacity. We intend to build 800 kilometres of 132 KV line, several sub stations and essentially, we will deal with the major towns Mwinilunga, Kabompo, Mufumbwe, Chavuma and Za