Rwanda’s Effort To Provide Universal Access to Power Gets a Boost from China
April 4, 2019 (EIRNS)—Rwanda’s efforts to achieve universal access to electricity by 2024 have received a boost after a deal that will see China’s SinoHydro build the Nyabarongo-II Hydropower Plant. The 43.5 MW plant is expected to be in operation in five years’ time at a cost of $214 million. According to Energy Development Corporation Limited (EDCL), once complete, the project will contribute over 11.5% of the total electricity on the national grid, reported the Rwandan daily New Times today.
In addition to electricity generation, Théoneste Higaniro, Head of Power Generation Projects Implementation at EDCL, said the multipurpose dam will be used for flood control and regulating water flow to allow for irrigation systems downstream and thereby reclaiming some 20,000 hectares of land for agricultural activities. The project is expected to create an average of 900 direct and indirect job opportunities.
Some 51% of Rwandan households have access to electricity, with 37% connected to the national grid and 14% to off-grid systems. Under its seven-year plan, which runs up to 2024, the government targets 100% access to electricity, the New Times reported.