African energy companies are gearing up to supply South Africa with electricity following the publication of the determination by the Department of Energy (DOE) to procure as much as 3 750 Mega Watts (MW) of base-load electricity from cross-border sources.
The development signals a reversal of the decades-old trend that saw South Africa exporting power to its neighbours.
“This has been incorporated into the country’s Integrated Energy Plan,” says Shumba Energy managing director, Mashale Phumaphi. “We have already had engagements with both governments [Botswana and South Africa] to determine the course of action.”
Shumba Energy is listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange and is in the process of developing two baseload coal-fired projects suitable for cross-border energy procurement: the Mabesekwa Export Independent Power Producer (IPP) in the north-east of Botswana, and the Sechaba Coal IPP near Palapye (roughly 350km from Gauteng as the crow flies). “These two projects are ideally positioned to handle the complete investment required to provide bankable energy to the cross-border grids of southern Africa,” says Phumaphi.
The cross-border procurement of power will work in the same way as the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Program (REIPPPP), with the Department of Energy adjudicating bids and Eskom…read more