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Exxaro, GDF Suez Plan 600MW Coal-Power Plant in S. Africa

Exxaro Resources Ltd., a South African coal producer, teamed up with France’s GDF Suez SA to develop a 600-megawatt electricity plant powered by the fuel in the Waterberg region of South Africa’s Limpopo province.

The capacity of the power station, to be located next to Exxaro’s Grootegeluk coal mine, may double depending on the availability of water and grid constraints, Pretoria-based Exxaro said today in a statement. Fuel for the plant will be supplied from its Thabametsi mine, a planned opencast operation.

“We’re still in the early stages, so there’s still some time to go until we get a sense of capital costs and timings,” Mzila Mthenjane, Exxaro’s executive head of strategy, said by phone.

By building its own generator, Exxaro can ensure it has electricity to operate even as state utility Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd. struggles to meet demand in Africa’s biggest economy. Exxaro currently supplies all the power-station coal it mines to Eskom, which relies on the fuel for 85 percent of generation.

Exxaro climbed for a third day in Johannesburg trading, gaining 1.4 percent to 151.88 rand by the close.

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