Sourcing people skills, capital equipment and money - SWOT analyses - Prepare due-diligence data rooms and pre-feasibility and bankable feasibility reports for Funding Acquisitions. Execute within budget and ontime with highly skilled best of breed cross border project management teams. Future Forecasting for strategic planning
Tuesday, 13 August 2013
Thursday, 23 May 2013
- The World Bank and other financial institutions are expected to offer finance and
- South Africa has agreed to buy half of the power generated.
French, Belgian, Chinese, Brazilian and African engineers have, over 60 years, all hoped to
dam the Congo. But decades of civil war, corruption, and the Democratic Republic of
Congo's (DRC) reputation as a failed state have limited the hydropower developments
at Inga Falls to two relatively small dams, built in 1972 and 1982. These, dubbed Inga 1 and 2,
have a theoretical capacity of 1 400MW but produce only about half that.
A new $20-billion development to generate a further 4 800MW was announced over the
weekend in Paris with work planned to start in October 2015. According to the DRC government,
working with European and other consultants, five further stages at Inga Falls could eventually
have a capacity of 40 000MW – the equivalent of more than 20 large nuclear power stations.
This would make the complete Grand
Inga development the largest hydro project
in the world, generating twice as much as
the Three Gorges dam in China. In theory,
say its backers, it could provide 40% of
Africa's electricity needs.
The attraction of developing hydropower
on the Congo, says the government,
is that unlike most of the world's great
dam projects it would not require tens of
thousands of people to be relocated,
nor would it block the river and result in significant environmental consequences. Because
the Congo River around Inga is so vast and falls nearly 100 metres over a short distance,
water can be diverted to create a massive new lake without disturbing its main flow.
"The impact on land use is very limited. The development can be progressive and carried
out in a series of further phases, eventually providing 40 000MW of power," says the technical
data for the proposed development.
The African Development Bank, World Bank, French Development Agency,
European Investment Bank and Development Bank of South Africa have all shown interest
in financing the next stage of the project. No developer has been chosen but Chinese,
Korean and Spanish companies are said to be in the forefront.
Key to the project is South Africa's commitment this week to buy 2 500MW of capacity.
"We have affirmed our commitment to the project by already provisioning for this purchase
in our budgetary plan," said South Africa Ministry of Energy official, Garrith Bezuidenhoudt.
But the prospect of the local population getting power from Inga in the next 20 years is remote.
Less than 10% of the population currently has electricity, with nearly all Inga 1 and 2 power
going directly to multinational mining companies in the Katanga "copper belt". It is expected
most Inga 3 power would travel 1 500 miles to power-hungry South Africa or large mines
Bad track record
Giant hydropower schemes in Africa have a bad track record. "Projects such as Inga 1 and
2 have not unleashed economic development, but have been major contributors to African
countries' unsustainable debt burden," said US-based International Rivers network which
has led opposition to major dams around the world for 20 years.
In a letter last week to the World Bank president, Jim Yong Kim, International Rivers and
18 other civil society organisations and networks from Africa, Europe and the United States
said the reality of large-scale dams seldom matched their expectations, mostly adding
to debt problems and allowing powerful companies to cheaply exploit and export Africa's
vast natural resources.
According to the groups, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has found that because
of the continent's low population density, grid-based electrification, including through
large hydropower projects, is not cost-effective for much of rural sub-Saharan Africa.
"Distributed renewable energy solutions such as wind, solar and micro hydropower
projects are much more effective at reaching the rural poor. According to the IEA report,
70% of the world's unelectrified rural areas are best served through mini-grids or
off-grid solutions," said the letter.
"In the DRC, the World Bank and other financiers have invested billions of dollars in
the construction and rehabilitation of the Inga 1 and 2 hydropower projects and
associated transmission lines over the past 40 years. After all this investment,
85% of the electricity in the DRC is consumed by high-voltage users, while only 6% to 9%
of the population has access to electricity. We are concerned that the bank's
proposed focus on large hydropower projects will write off electricity access for
the majority of Africa's poor." – Guardian News and Media 2013
Posted by Editorial at 12:26
Saturday, 20 April 2013
Deal by emerging nations meeting in South Africa one of several moves to challenge Western-backed monetary institutions.
|The BRICS grouping of emerging powers have reached a deal to establish a development bank that would rival Western-backed institutions.|
"It's done," South African Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said after meeting with his counterparts from Brazil, Russia, India and China.
But Russian Finance Minister Anton Siluanov said that the group's ministers were unable to agree on some of the details of the project.
"A decision on the location of the bank and funding still needs to be made," he told reporters in Durban, adding that
further steps would be required before the BRICS development bank could be created.
Together the BRICS account for 25 percent of global GDP and 40 percent of the world's population.
But members say institutions such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the UN Security Council are not changing fast enough to reflect their new-found clout.
Disputes remain over what the new bank will do, with all sides trying to mould the institution to their own foreign or domestic policy goals, and with each looking for assurances of an equitable return on their initial investment of about $10bn.
China and Brazil also signed an agreement at Tuesday's meeting to do billions of dollars of trade in their local currencies, as the BRICS nations work to lessen their dependence on the US dollar and euro.
Finance ministers Lou Jiwei of China and Guido Mantega of Brazil signed the deal, amid the continuing euro crisis and little signs of growth in the West.
Xi Jinping, who has underscored the growing importance of the group by making Durban his first summit as China's president, had earlier expressed hopes for "positive headway" in establishing the bank.
South African President Jacob Zuma has lauded the summit as a means of addressing his country's chronic economic problems, including high unemployment.
"BRICS provides an opportunity for South Africa to promote its competitiveness," Zuma said in a speech on the eve of the summit.
"It is an opportunity to move further in our drive to promote economic growth and confront the challenge of poverty, inequality and unemployment that afflicts our country."
In a keynote speech in Tanzania on Monday, Xi pledged Beijing's "sincere friendship" with the continent, and a relationship that respects Africa's "dignity and independence".
If initiatives such as the bank succeed it would send a loud message to the US and European nations that the current global balance of power is unworkable.
Posted by Editorial at 15:48
Posted by Editorial at 15:26
Friday, 8 March 2013
Tony Blair has added to his burgeoning African empire. The former prime minister can now count himself as official adviser to the president of Guinea, a hot, steamy republic in west Africa in possession of vast mineral resources.
Posted by Editorial at 08:30