Astra Energy Signs MoU For 350MW Tanzania Power Plant

The combined-cycle gas-fired plant will be developed as an IPP.

By Liz Bains on
12th July 2023

Astra Energy Tanzania has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) to develop a 350MW combined-cycle power plant in Tanzania.

The subsidiary of the US’ Astra Energy will develop the plant as an independent power producer, selling the output to TANESCO.

“The Tanzanian government is actively working to modernise their critical infrastructure and has plans to increase installed generation capacity to support more industry in the country,” said Tony Thompson, vice-president of electrical power generation, Astra Energy Tanzania. 

“Their plan to allow more penetration by independent power producers like Astra into the Tanzanian power market is an indication of their forward-thinking approach that supports the Tanzania Development Vision 2025. The MoU authorises Astra to advance to complete a full bankable feasibility study and then enter into negotiations for a long-term power purchase agreement.”

The signing of the MoU was announced on 22 June.

The project will help Tanzania to harness its natural gas reserves, estimated at 57 trillion cubic feet, to provide much-needed generation capacity to strengthen its baseload supply to the electricity grid. 

Additionally, it will support Tanzania’s goal to increase rural connection to at least 75% by 2033. Currently, less than 40% of households in Tanzania have access to electricity, according to Astra Energy. Average per capita electricity consumption in Tanzania is 108kWh a year, a fraction of the global average of 2,500 kWh.

In March 2022, TANESCO provided a formal letter to Astra Energy authorising the company to prepare a project concept note.

Astra Energy is also planning to develop a 50MW Clean and Renewable Energy Park in Zanzibar, comprising a solar farm and a waste-to-energy facility. The feasibility study for the project is complete and the firm is now undertaking the detailed engineering design and environmental impact studies. 

Construction of the park is expected to start in 2024, with commercial operation in 2025.

Astra Energy hopes the two projects combined to generate US$180-200 million in recurring annual revenues over a minimum of 25 years.

Photo: Natural gas combined-cycle power plant (© Thailandonly | Dreamstime)


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