Namibia to Name Kudu Power-Plant Bidders Next Week After Delays

Namibia Power Corp., the country’s state-owned utility, will name 15 shortlisted bidders to build the Kudu gas-fired electricity plant next week, pushing through the project after years of delays.

The utility, known as Nampower, has narrowed the list from 46 bidders, Managing Director Paulinus Shilamba said by telephone from Windhoek, the capital. The company will distribute tender documents to the remaining 15 before selecting a winner, he said.

Namibia is seeking to build the $1.2 billion power station to generate electricity from its Kudu gas fields, about 200 kilometers (124 miles) off the southern town of Oranjemund. Development has been delayed as Nampower focused on smaller projects. In boosting local output, the plant will help the nation curb reliance on imports while securing supply for mines.

The combined-cycle gas-turbine facility will be able to produce 800 megawatts, more than doubling Namibia’s output. Nampower, the sole owner of the project, is selling a 49 percent stake and has appointed advisers including Ernst & Young LLP to manage the search for equity investors.

Namibia’s electricity demand is projected to rise to 800 megawatts by 2018 from 534 megawatts, according to Nampower. The utility started importing power from an Aggreko Plc plant in Mozambique at the end of June, in addition to supplies from Zambia and Zimbabwe. Imports from South Africa have been curtailed by shortages in that country.

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