Jindal Africa will invest US$2 billion in Botswana through its 600 MW power plant which recently commenced in Mmamabula.

Government recently increased the initial 300MW power purchase agreement with Jindal Africa to 600MW responding to the increased national power demand. This is expected to augment the 600MW Morupule B power generation which is currently failing to meet the national demand due to its malfunctions.

Jindal Steel and Power Chairman, Naveen Jindal said they have invested in Botswana and plan to do this project for over 10 years. “Our investment will surpass $2 billion, spanning the coal mine, 600 MW power stations, and associated infrastructure, will be the largest Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) into Botswana.” He said they are determined to deliver power by 2026 although the commercial operation date is scheduled for 2028. Jindal reiterated that their partnership with government transcends supplying electricity but it's about delivering a sustainable source of power that will illuminate homes, energize industries, and empower communities. “I strongly believe that access to electricity is vital for Botswana's economic transformation and a key driver towards industrialisation.

This transformation will propel the nation into a high growth trajectory.” Currently electricity peak demand is now close to 700MW during the winter peak demand season. At the time of completion of the project the 300MW plant will increase the country’s total baseload power to 820MW. Commissioning the project on Friday, President Mokgweetsi Masisi said the project will significantly enhance the security of electricity supply to the economy and is set to end Botswana’s dependence on neighbouring countries to meet the country’s electrical energy demand which continues to increase with the ongoing economic and socio-economic developments across all sectors of the economy.

“While we are grateful for the commercial electricity trade arrangements under the auspices of the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP) which Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) has been dependent on to meet the nation’s power demand for several years, it has become financially unsustainable to rely on power imports from our neighbours due to the regional power generation deficit.” During its operation, the power plant is anticipated to deploy modern clean coal technology which limits emissions of harmful gases namely Sulphur Dioxide (SoX) and Nitrous Oxides (NoX) to international environmental standards.

Masisi said where fossil based primary energy resources are exploited such as coal, clean coal technology is mandatory in order to manage the effects of fossil thermal generation facilities on the environment. “Botswana will continue to exploit its primary energy resources, namely coal, solar, wind and others in a sustainable manner. Our Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) aims to achieve a sustainable energy mix comprising renewable and non renewable energy sources.”