Maputo — Mozambique's publicly-owned electricity company, EDM, on Tuesday signed contracts with Indian and Spanish companies for the construction of the first phase of a high voltage transmission line from the Chimuara sub-station in Zambezia province to the northern port of Nacala.
Phase One will carry the power from Chimuara to Alto Molocue in Upper Zambezia, and will be financed to the tune of 200 million US dollars by the Islamic Development Bank.
But a further 400 million dollars must be mobilised for the rest of the line. Phase two will run from Alto Molocue to Namialo, in Nampula province, and phase three will cover the final stretch from Namialo to Nacala.
The contracts signed on Tuesday, said EDM chairperson Ali Sicola, follow an international tender in which 44 companies from across the world submitted bids.
The Indian contractor, Larsen and Toubro, will be responsible for the 400 KV transmission line, running the entire 367 kilometres of phase one. The Spanish company, Elecnor, has won the contract for installing a new substation at Chimuara.
Sicola said these contracts "are an important landmark for EDM and for Mozambique, since they allow a start to be made on building infrastructures that will allow the transmission of large amounts of electricity in order to industrialise our country and, in the medium term, to interconnect our national grid with that of Tanzania".
Sicola thought it important that the two contractors should hire Mozambican labour, so that the project "may be inclusive and may benefit local communities".
The contract with Larsen and Toubros is for 77.2 million dollars, and that with Elecnor is for 64.3 million dollars. The work should be completed within 24 months.