Angolan government secures funding of US$100 million to refurbish Cambambe dam

24 March 2011

Luanda, Angola, 24 March – The project to refurbish and modernize the Cambambe Hydroelectric dam has secured a loan of around US$100 million, which corresponds to 25 percent of the total amount needed for the work, according to the latest edition of weekly newspaper, Expansão.

The loan is the result of an agreement between the Government and several foreign financiers, including French banking group BNP Paribas.

Once the funding has been made available, the start of the second phase of the project, scheduled for last January, is guaranteed, according to the Angolan weekly newspaper.

According to the construction company involved in the project, Brazil’s Odebrecht, the second phase will begin with opening up tunnels for construction of a machine room, as the new plant will have four generator groups, each with a capacity of 175 megawatts.

Building the second production plant is expected to cost some US$400 million, invested in construction work, building water intakes, penstocks and finishes.

Construction of the second power plant at the Cambambe dam is due for conclusion in 2014.

The aim of the project, according to energy and Water minister, Emanuela Vieira Lopes, is to boost the electricity supply to Luanda and to all the municipal areas of Kwanza Norte province.

Cambambe has been undergoing building work since 2009 to increase its capacity to 700 megawatts.

The third phase, which has yet to be agreed between Odebrecht and the Angolan government, includes raising the dam wall from 102 to 132 metres, with a view to making better use of the waters flowing down the Kwanza river.

This project involves Brazilian company Odebrecht and German company Voith, which is to supply the turbines, France’s Alston, which will supply the generators and Brazil’s Engevix, specialised in electronic engineering.

The Cambambe hydroelectric dam was built between 1958 and 1962 and is located in the municipal area of the same name, near the city of Dondo, in Kwanza Norte province, some 195 kilometres northeast of Luanda. (macauhub)