Reduction in South Africa’s electricity supply will lower Cahora Bassa income

7 August 2009

Maputo, Mozambique, 7 Aug – Income from the Cahora Bassa Hydroelectric Dam (HCB) could suffer a fall this year, due to a reduction in the supply to South African’s Eskom, the dam’s main client, the company’s president has said.

Paulo Muxanga said that the supply of electrical energy to South Africa would decrease due to reconstruction work on the Apolo I substation, where the infrastructure that receives electricity from HCB and distributes it to South Africa is located.

HCB production levels are maintained. A slight fall is likely because the Apolo substation has been undergoing reconstruction work and we cannot circulate as much electricity as we would like. We had the same problem last year and, even this year the substation has had many interruptions,” said Paulo Muxanga.

If South Africa can’t receive the electricity, we cannot charge for it,” said HCB’s CEO.

As well as supplying South Africa, which has most of the 2000 megawatts produced by the dam, the Apolo station also supplies southern Mozambique with 400 megawatts and a further 150 of the 200 megawatts HCB sells to Zimbabwe.

Despite having been built in Mozambique, HCB has its transformation and supply infrastructure in South Africa, which is the biggest customer for energy produced by the dam.

Portugal holds a 15 percent share in HCB, after selling 67 percent to Mozambique which now controls 75 percent, under the terms of an agreement reached in 2008. (macauhub)