Cahora & Tete

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Cahora Bassa – A Foundation for electricity expansion

Posted on 14 April 2012

The Cahora Bassa dam on the Zambezi River is “a foundation for the expansion of electricity infrastructures and for energy-intensive industries in our country”, declared Mozambican President Armando Guebuza on Monday night.
He was speaking at a banquet offered in honour of Portuguese Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho, a few hours after the two men had signed the agreement that will see Mozambique acquire 100 per cent of Hidroelectrica de Cahora Bassa (HCB), the company that operates the dam, by 2014.
Mozambique’s “energy security strategy”, Guebuza said, rested on taking advantage of “the vast and diversified potential” that the country possesses – this included hydropower, natural gas, coal and renewable energies.
“These projects will allow increased availability of electricity to respond to the needs of economic growth and social development in the short, medium and long term”, he stressed.
Surplus power would be exported, “thus contributing to developing the energy market in the region and in the continent”, added Guebuza.
He regarded the contribution of Cahora Bassa as “determinant for electricity security and stability”. The dam could provide clean energy “on a scale that accompanies the increase in consumption in the country”.
Effective control of the dam by the Mozambican state, Guebuza continued, “will allow its full integration into the policies and strategies to develop planned electricity infrastructures, based on the diversity of sources for producing energy in various parts of our country”.
Guebuza also stressed the importance of the constriction of the new “backbone” of the Mozambican electricity grid – a new power transmission line from Tete province to Maputo “which will be determinant in distributing the power produced in the Zambezi Valley”.
The Portuguese company REN (Redes Energeticas Nacionais), which operates the Portuguese national grid, will be one of the shareholders in the company that is to be set up to manage the new transmission line.