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Namibia Partners With Chinese Company to Build 50MW Wind Power Plant

NamPower Managing Director Kahenge Haulofu and Fang Xiang, general manager of China Energy International Group Co., Ltd. (Namibia), pose for a photo at a signing ceremony in Windhoek, Namibia, on April 17, 2023. Image via NamPower.

Namibia Power Corporation (NamPower) has signed power purchase and transmission connection agreements for the development of a 50MW wind power project in Lüderitz, southwestern Namibia.

CERIM Lüderitz Energy, a joint venture between Riminii Investments and Energy China, will undertake the project which will cost $96.4 million.

In a statement, NamPower said the 50MW wind power plant is slated for completion within 27 months, with commercial operation expected by July 2025.

NamPower Managing Director Kahenge Haulofu stated at the signing ceremony that the project will contribute significantly to NamPower’s supply portfolio when integrated with other generation projects in the Integrated Strategy and Business Plan.

CERIM Lüderitz Energy will handle the full development of the power plant, including financing, construction, operation, and maintenance, as per NamPower. The Namibian Power Utility will be the sole off-taker of the electricity generated from the power plant for the duration of the 25-year PPA term.

Namibia faces a power deficit and currently relies on imports from its neighbors South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Zambia, for approximately 60 percent of its electricity supply. This dependence on other countries leaves the country vulnerable to price volatility and supply disruptions.

In 2019, Haulofu said that NamPower planned to add 220 MW in new electricity capacity by 2023. This additional power would help the country wean itself off imports. Wind, solar, and biomass generators were NamPower’s targeted to deliver 150 MW in the plans.

Independent Power Producers (IPPs) would provide the additional 70 MW would according to NamPower’s business plan for 2019 to 2023.

Chinese companies have leaped ahead and their expertise in energy generation from solar and wind, among others, put them in an advantageous position not only in Namibia but also in Africa which lags behind on power access.

WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT? Despite its small population, the country has a low electrification rate of 56 percent. Namibia can only meet about 40 percent of its electricity needs from its own generation capacities. The country has a peak load demand of about 630 MW and it only has 610 MW of grid-connected generation capacity installed. Of this capacity, 459.50 MW is owned by NamPower while 150 MW is mostly photovoltaic and operated by IPPs.


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