THE Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC), a subsidiary of ZESA Holdings, has secured US$28,6 million from the Export Import Bank of India for the rehabilitation of the Deka pipeline, The Financial Gazette’s Companies & Markets (C&M) has learnt.The move is meant to increase the supply of raw water for electricity generation from the Zambezi river into Hwange Thermal Power Station, the country’s largest coal-fired power generator meeting about 40 percent of Zimbabwe’s power requirements.
C&M is reliably informed that the government of Zimbabwe and the Export Import Bank of India signed a credit agreement in Harare last month.
It is also understood that Water and Power Services Consultants (WAPCOS), wholly-owned by the government of India, has been appointed project and engineering consultants for the project.
ZPC public relations executive, Fadzai Chisveto, confirmed the development when contacted for comment last week.
“Funding for the rehabilitation of the Deka pipeline has been secured,” Chisveto said.
Last month, the Export Import Bank of India and the Government of Zimbabwe signed a US$28,6 million line of credit agreement for the upgrade of the pipeline.
“WAPCOS has been appointed project and engineering consultant for the Deka project. It has been involved in the installation, commissioning, operation and maintenance of the Hwange Thermal Power Station,” said Chisveto.
She said the rehabilitation of the 42-kilometre pipeline is expected to take two years.
“The project is expected to commence in October 2013, and to be completed in 2015,”Chisveto told C&M.
The pipeline brings raw water from the Zambezi River into two reservoirs with capacity of 150 000m³ each supplying water into Hwange for electricity generation. The pipeline also supplies drinking water infrastructure for the surrounding Ingagula community.
However, reliability of its pumping system has over the years registered a downward trend giving rise to uncertainty of water supply to the Hwange power plant and the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA) water treatment plant.
Hwange Power Station currently requires 3500m³ of raw water per hour, and this may increase to about 6000m³/hr when the expansion units are in operation.
Two months ago, the State procurement board awarded the tender to expand Hwange Power Station to China Machinery Engineering Company (CMEC).
The station is currently using six units and the expansion would see the plant adding two more units (7 & 8).
The additional units would have a combined generation capacity of 600megawatts (MW).
ZPC believes the project will begin during the course of this year and will take about three years to construct.
The country is experiencing crippling power shortages with the national demand at peak periods estimated to be at 2200MW against available generation of 1400MW with the shortfall imported from regional power utilities.
However ZPC is on a drive to ensure the situation improves through various projects.
In December 2012, ZPC signed an engineering procurement construction (EPC) contract with Sino Hydro for the expansion of Kariba South expansion project which will add 300MW to the national grid.
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