WINDHOEK (Reuters) – Namibia will reduce the size of the planned Kudu Power Station after off-take agreements with South Africa’s Eskom and Zambia’s Copperbelt Energy Corporation failed to materialize, the chief executive of power utility NamPower said on Friday.
Namibia’s offshore Kudu Gas Fields have proven and probable recoverable reserves estimated at more than 3.3 trillion cubic feet and is key to the diamond producer’s plans to reduce its dependence on electricity imports.
The sparsely-populated southern African nation’s installed capacity is 513.5 megawatts.
NamPower Chief Executive Officer Simson Haulofu said the decision to resize the power plant from 850MW to 442.5 MW was made considering the power demand load forecast for Namibia.
“The decision was also made to address the need for the project’s reliance on export agreements to reach financial close. The export agreements were one of the issues that delayed the project as they took forever,” Haulofu said.
He said the project will no longer rely on export agreements to offload the surplus capacity as there won’t be any under the resized project. The power plant is now expected to cost an estimated $9.4 billion Namibian dollars ($760 million), down from the previous estimate of 15.6 billion Namibian dollars.
($1 = 12.3872 Namibian dollars)
Reporting by Nyasha NyaungwaEditing by Ed Stoddard and William Maclean