The federal government yesterday signed a N162 billion contract with two Chinese firms, Sino Hydro Corporation and China National Electric Engineering Corporation (CNEEC) for the construction of the Zungeru Hydro Electric dam in Niger State, in a fresh move to complete the project which was initiated as far back as 1982 when its feasibility studies were initially conducted.
The dam will take about four years (48 months) to complete and is expected to generate 700 Mega Watts (MW) of electricity when completed as well as create over a thousand jobs.
The project was originally conceived to be a 950mw plant but was reviewed downward in 2008 by Coyne et Bellier which provided the feasibility study and engineering design.
Under the arrangement, Exim bank of China will provide 75 per cent funding of the project while the federal government will provide the remaining 25 per cent.
Speaking during the signing ceremony in Abuja, Minister of State for Power, Zainab Kuchi, disclosed that the Nigerian government's share of the funding, which amounts to $309 million was already available in the ministry.