Tanzania Signs Contract For 150MW Solar Plant
The project will be built in the Shinyanga Region over two phases.
Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) has signed a contract with China's Sinohydro to construct the country’s largest photovoltaic (PV) solar power plant in Kishapu, Shinyanga Region, Tanzania’s Daily News reports.
The plant will have a direct connection to the existing Singida-Shinyanga 220kV high-voltage line which borders the site, making it Tanzania's first grid-connected PV plant.
Construction of the 50MW first phase will begin in June and be completed within 14 months.
According to Daily News, the contract is worth Tanzanian shilling 275 billion (US$116 million).
In June 2021, Agence Française de Développement (AFD) agreed a euro 130 million concessional loan with TANESCO to finance the 150MW project.
The plant is expected to produce 91,600 MWh of electricity each year, saving 22,400 tonnes equivalent a year of carbon dioxide emissions.
The AFD said the funding would also help to transform TANESCO's transmission network into a smart grid through addition of a supervisory control and data acquisitions (SCADA) system in a national grid control centre in Dodoma, and distribution management systems in Dodoma, Arusha, Mwanza, and Mbeya. The agency noted this would help to ensure the grid’s stability and reduce losses.
The solar project aligns with Tanzania's National Five-Year Development Plan 2021-26 which commits to increasing power generation capacity and strengthening transmission and distribution networks and promoting the development of renewable energy. The target is for 500MW of renewables capacity to be installed by 2025.
Twitter caption translation from Swahili: The first large-scale electricity project in East Africa will begin in June 2023. 150 megawatts of solar power to be produced in Shinyanga.
Photo: Solar plant (© Dako99 | Dreamstime)