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Zimbabwe, Sinohydro to Upgrade Kariba Plant With $400 Million

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Dec. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Sinohydro Corp. and the Zimbabwe Power Co. (Pvt) Ltd. signed a $400 million agreement to upgrade the southern African nation’s Kariba South hydroelectricity plant, said ZPC Chairman Victor Gapare.

The renovations are expected to take four years and will add 300 megawatts to Kariba’s approximately 750-megawatt capacity, he told reporters in the capital, Harare, today. The deal will allow Sinohydro to “start detailed drawings, while the ZPC board and financial advisers KPMG finalize financial arrangements,” Gapare said.

ZPC is a unit of state-owned Zesa Holdings (Pvt) Ltd., Zimbabwe’s monopoly power utility. Zesa can generate and import about half of Zimbabwe’s 2,200-megawatt electricity demand. Zimbabwe needs $5 billion to $7 billion to increase power generation, Gapare said.

“It becomes incumbent on the nation to put in place an investment climate that will enable the attraction of capital to carry out these projects,” he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Godfrey Marawanyika in Harare at gmarawanyika@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Antony Sguazzin at asguazzin@bloomberg.net