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NamPower sighs relief as new PPA is signed

Power agreement, Managing Director Paulinus Shilamba and Managing Director of ZPC shake on the agreement. (Photograph by Musa Carter)

Power agreement, Managing Director Paulinus Shilamba and Managing Director of ZPC shake on the agreement. (Photograph by Musa Carter)

The power utility company NamPower on Thursday signed a new Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Zimbabwe Power Company (ZPC) a subsidiary of ZESA Holdings which will see a further 80MW being supplied to Namibia over a period of 15 years to commence as soon as April 2015.
The agreement of acquiring the power from Zimbabwe will see Standard Bank Namibia footing an undisclosed amount for the agreement. .
The PPA between the two power companies will take effect with the lapsing of the previous agreement which was supposed to end in October but has been extended to February 2015 in which Namibia availed US$40 million funding for the rehabilitation of the Hwange Power Station in Zimbabwe and ZESA paid back the loan through power exports to NamPower.
Speaking at the signing, Minister of Mines and Energy, Hon. Isak Katali said, “ The PPA with ZPC comes at the right time because the agreement between NamPower and ZESA Holdings on the Hwange rehabilitation project that was scheduled to expire this month has been extended only up to February next year.”
“The agreement being signed today is a clear testimony of the sound relationship that exists between NamPower and ZESA Holdings, the holding company for ZPC and ultimately between the two countries,” he added.
Currently Namibia imports on average 60% and 80% power per year during dry seasons from surrounding countries.
 Chairperson of NamPower Board, Maria Nakale also present at the signing said that out of the 70% imports of electricity, 25 to 30% of the imports are coming from Zimbabwe.

Katali reiterated that, “We are all aware of the critical shortage of power supply capacity in the SADC region and by extension, Namibia. It is no secret that Namibia’s power demand has long surpassed supply. We heavily rely on imports. As such, balancing demand and supply in Namibia, which is not self-sufficient in power supply, is not an easy task.”
Meanwhile Chairperson of ZESA Holdings Board, DR Herbert Murerwa said besides the relationship that the two power companies have built over the years their relationship has been unique in that cooperation has gone beyond conventional power trade.
“The NamPower and ZPC Power Purchase Agreement is intended to securitize part of the funding of the project that ZPC has embarked on for the extension of the 750MW Kariba Hydro power station by an additional 300MW at a cost of US$533 and is expected to be commissioned in 2017,” Dr Murerwa said.
Katali then commended the NamPower Board of Directors, Management and staff for their continued efforts to ensure security of supply of power to the nation.

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