IDA earmarks US$20m for power expansion in Southern Africa

By MAILESI BANDA

ABOUT US$20 million will be disbursed by the International Development Association (IDA) to support the Southern Africa Power Pool (SAPP).

And Zambia as one of the key members of the SAPP has been chosen as the first point in connecting with neighboring Eastern Africa Power Pool (EAPP).

Despite the abundance of energy resources in the Southern African region generating capacity has remained inadequate to accommodate power needs.

According to the World Bank under which the IDA fell, regional integration was the most efficient ways to unlock the region’s energy potential and it can have great transformative impact.

The World Bank expressed concern that the regional generation and transmission investment projects that were critical to promote integration were not being developed, adding that lack of adequate preparation is a primary reason for regional energy project not moving forward.

The bank says regional integration in the electricity sub sector is at the core of Southern Africa’s development agenda and is pursued through SAPP a project the bank describes as the most advanced power pool in Africa.

In his update on the projects being implemented in the region where Zambia is also participating in the report it is disclosed that advancing regional energy projects has become a top priority to the region and is being promoted as a truly regional initiative.

The World Bank notes that Zambia’s geographical location gives it the potential to become the regional power trading hub since many of the SAPP regional priority projects are located in Zambia.

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