Energy Minister Mathew Nkhuwa says government is considering establishing a gas pipeline from gas-rich neighbouring countries into Zambia in an effort to meet energy demands.
And Nkhuwa, who disclosed that the transmission lines being constructed between Zambia and Angola via the Kolowezi inter-connector project, would help transmit power from countries of surplus and connect to countries of deficit in order to stabilise energy demand in the SADC region.
In a statement released by first secretary for press and public relations at the Zambian Mission in Pretoria, South Africa, Naomi Nyawali, Nkhuwa was speaking at the 37th SADC Meeting of Ministers responsible for Energy and Water held at the Sandton Convention Centre in Johannesburg.
“Mr. Nkhuwa said Zambia has heightened both oil and gas exploration and was hopeful these resources will be found and exploited. The Minister said the private sector hasd already shown interest in the construction of a gas pipeline from Mozambique into Zambia, adding that the alternative energy sources would reduce the demand placed on Hydro electricity supply in Zambia. Mr Nkhuwa said Zambia needs to interact more with the neighbouring SADC countries in order to benefit from regional development,” Nyawali stated.
She added that Nkhuwa disclosed that the energy inter-connector power project between Zambia and Tanzania had reached 50 per cent completion rate.
“Construction of transmission lines is expected to be completed and operational by the end of the year, including the Kolowezi inter-connector project with Angola. Mr Nkhuwa mentioned that the project would help evacuate power from countries of surplus to connect to countries of deficit to stabilise energy demand in the SADC region. He added that there is need for countries to migrant to smart grid system of power supply and distribution. Mr Nkhuwa noted that the current system was outdated, therefore, causing damages to power plants,” stated Nyawali.
Meanwhile, Zambia’s High Commissioner to South Africa, Emmanuel Mwamba said in order to meet the deficit in the region, countries needed to invest in generation of power from various sources including; solar, wind and gas, thereby creating energy stability in the region.