Zambia Needs $2.1bn for Hydropower
Feb 9, 2007 All Africa Global Media
Parliament heard yesterday that Zambia needs US$2.1
billion investment to expand hydropower generation
and transmission to avoid a looming power shortage
in the next five years.
Energy and Water Development Minister, Felix Mutati,
said yesterday in a ministerial statement that Zambia
must move quickly to develop hydropower projects to
avert the looming power shortage.
Mr Mutati said the Government had made progress in
project preparation for the development and expansion
of four hydropower stations situated in different
parts of the country and resources would come from
the private sector.
Zesco and TATA Zambia would form a joint venture
for the Itezhi-Tezhi project estimated at $150 million,
Kariba North Bank extension would cost $250 million,
Kafue Gorge Lower project was estimated at $1 million
while the cost for the Kalungwishi project would be
known after the bid valuation exercise is completed.
Though Zesco's ongoing rehabilitation of existing
hydropower plants would be completed in 2008, Zambia
would still face severe power shortages.
The looming power shortage is a major threat to Government's
efforts to achieve sustained economic development
in the agricultural, tourism and mining sectors.
Zesco's electricity pricing had not covered the cost
of electricity supply, a situation that had led to
the weak financial performance in quality service
delivery as the power utility is owed K200 billion
Answering a question from Gwembe MP, Brian Ntundu
(UPND), who wanted to know if the Government had plans
to increase the K2,000 risk allowances for police
officers, Home Affairs Minister, Ronnie Shikapwasha,
said the Government had abolished it and replaced
it with a K50,000 exposure allowance.
He said the Government was committed to improving
the conditions for all uniformed officers, and accommodation
was catered for in the Fifth National Development
Environment, Tourism and Natural Resources Deputy
Minister, Michael Kaingu, said the Government was
working at raising the source of the Zambezi river
to acceptable international standards though entry
to the source of the river would be restricted. This
was in response to a question by Mwinilunga East MP,
Stephen Katuta (UPND), who wanted to know what the
Government was doing about the Zambezi river.
Answering a question from Chifunabuli MP, Ernest
Mwansa (PF), who wanted to know why Zambia State Insurance
Corporation (ZSIC) should not be privatised, Finance
and National Planning Minister, Ng'andu Magande, said
the Government had no intentions of privatising the
This was after Roan MP, Chishimba Kambwili (PF),
asked why some Government institutions were taking
business to Professional Insurance.
Speaker Amusaa Mwanamwambwa ruled that the minister
of Finance and National Planning should issue a comprehensive
statement on the K3 trillion that had been reported
stolen from Government coffers after Lusaka Central
MP, Guy Scott, raised a point of order asking why
the minister had not spoken about the matter.
Acting leader of Government in the House, Vernon
Mwaanga, said constitutionally, the Government was
within the stipulated period of 90 days after the
financial end of year of March 31 to present the national
Budget. Mr Mwaanga was responding to a question from
Kabwata MP Given Lubinda (PF), who asked why this
year's Budget was being presented late.