In efforts to improve power transmission in Southern Africa, the African Development Bank (AfDB) and South Africa’s utility company, Eskom have signed a $25 million loan agreement.
In a statement released yesterday, Eskom said the agreement contributes to the realization of the New Deal on Energy in Southern Africa, by ensuring capacity to add new connections in South Africa and the region.
On the role the loan agreement will play in the development of the transmission infrastructure in the Southern Africa Power Pool, Director General of the African Development Bank Group’s Southern Bureau, Dr. Kapil Kapoor said: “The financing of the Eskom Transmission Project will result in a significant strengthening of Sothern Africa’s transmission infrastructure. Not only will this improve the reliability and security of electricity supply, but will also allow for the integration of large-scale renewable energy into the transmission network, enhance network capacity for future load growth and ensure reduction in transmission losses.”
The loan agreement will be used to construct 552km consisting of 436km (of 400kV) and 116km of (132kV) transmission lines and associated substations across the Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal provinces and an upgrade if substation equipment including earthing systems at existing substations in Mpumalanga.
Eskom contributes an estimated three-quarters of the total installed power generation capacity in the Southern Africa Power Pool and exports to six countries in the region.