Zesco seeks engineering, transaction aid for 750-MW Kafue Gorge Lower hydro development project

Kariba North Bank Hydro
Kariba North Bank Hydro

Zambia Electricity Supply Corp. (ZESCO) invites expressions of interest for design and construction supervision and for a transaction adviser for the 750-MW Kafue Gorge Lower hydroelectric development project. Responses to separate solicitations are due March 15.

Kafue Gorge Lower is to be built at Kafue Gorge, 40 miles upstream of the confluence of the Kafue River and the Zambezi River. The new project is to be downstream from the tailrace tunnel outlet of the 900-MW Kafue Gorge project.

On the drawing boards for several years, the US$1.5 billion Kafue Gorge Lower was delayed due to the global financial crisis and technical difficulties with the initial project site, which in 2008 was moved a few hundred meters downstream to a less complicated site. ZESCO reportedly signed an agreement in 2010 to develop the project with China Africa Development Fund and SinoHydro, with a US$1 billion loan from China Development Bank. The remaining US$500 million was expected to be provided by equity partners.

In the first of two solicitations, ZESCO invites expressions of interest from engineering consulting firms to prepare technical specifications, produce tender documents, oversee the tendering process, review designs and drawings, supervise construction, and participate in testing and commissioning of Kafue Gorge Lower.

The project’s main features include a power plant with five 150-MW turbine-generators and a 140-meter-tall concrete-faced rockfill dam.

In a second solicitation, ZESCO invites expressions of interest from transaction advisers to propose a development strategy including structuring, packaging, resource mobilization (debt and equity) strategy, legal documentation, and capacity building. The adviser is to ensure participation by the best available companies in the bidding process, adequate financing of capital cost, and optimizing project revenue potential.

Expressions of interest for both solicitations are to be deposited by 10:30 a.m. March 15 in the tender box at ZESCO Ltd. Head Office, 2nd Floor, Main Building, Stand No. 6949 Great East Road, Lusaka, Zambia. The transaction adviser solicitation specifies the expression of interest must comprise one original and four copies labeled “ZESCO/020/13 Expression of interest for the engagement of the transaction advisor(s) for development of Kafue Gorge Lower Hydropower Project.”

For information, contact ZESCO Ltd., Project Director T. Miti, Kafue Gorge Lower Hydropower Project, 2nd Floor, Mukuba Pension House, Dedani Kimathi Road, Lusaka, Zambia; (260) 211-221350; E-mail: [email protected]; N.C. Nchimunya, Senior Manager, Procurement, (260) 211-223971; Fax: (260) 211-223971.