A total of 63 regional infrastructure projects have been developed in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Region, including 17 regional energy projects under the second Priority Action Plan for Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA PAP 2), the African Union continental strategic infrastructure framework, the SADC Executive Secretary, Her Excellency Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax, has said.
H.E Dr Tax was speaking during the virtual SADC Council of Ministers meeting which was hosted by Mozambique on 12 March 2021. The Council of Ministers discussed policies, strategies and programmes geared towards consolidating SADC regional integration in fulfilment of Council's mandate as spelt out in Article 11 of the SADC Treaty. Honourable Verónica Nataniel Macamo Dlhovo, the Mozambican Minister of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation, chaired the meeting in her capacity as the Chairperson of the SADC Council of Ministers.
Notable progress has been recorded in the preparation and implementation of priority interconnector projects to connect Angola, Malawi, and the United Republic of Tanzania to the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP) grid.
The Mozambique-Malawi interconnector reached financial closure in September 2019 and is at construction stage. The target is to commission this project by the end of 2022. The Zambia-Tanzania interconnector includes several components and is at construction phase on both the Zambian side and Tanzanian side where the two transmission lines were designed to converge near Nakonde Border by 2022.
Regional projects at construction stage include Julius Nyerere hydropower in the United Republic of Tanzania and Kafue Gorge Lower hydropower in Zambia.
Other notable energy projects in the region which are at preparation stage include the Second Alaska-Sherwood; Angola-DRC; Malawi-Zambia; Baynes transmission project; Mozambique-Tanzania transmission interconnectors; and the Mozambique integrated transmission backbone.
Regional generation projects also at preparation stage include Caculo Cabaca Hydropower in Angola; Lesotho Highlands; Songwe between Malawi and the United Republic of Tanzania; Mpanda Nkuwa, Cahora Bassa North Bank (CBN) hydropower and Boroma hydropower and Temane gas in Mozambique; Baynes hydropower in Namibia; Rumakali and Ruhudji hydropower in United Republic of Tanzania; Luapula, Mulembo Lelya and Kalungwishi hydropower projects in Zambia; and Batoka Gorge between Zambia and Zimbabwe.
A study to create an enabling environment for developing energy projects has been commissioned. Establishment of the Regional Transmission Infrastructure Financing Facility (RTIFF) which has already identified core services and institutional arrangements under which RTIFF can operate is expected to be concluded by the end of March 2022 after consideration by Council.
The development of the Regional Gas Master Plan has also commenced, with Phase I concluded in October 2020. It covered gas demand and supply assessment, gas market study and capacity building needs. Phase II covering the soft and hard gas infrastructure blueprint for the Region will commence during the first quarter of 2021/22 financial year.