Tanzania: Geita Eyes Electric Car, Battery Production

THE gold-rich Geita Region will start production of electric cars and batteries beginning next year, it has been disclosed here.

The region's authorities are today expected to sign an agreement with a private investor who will undertake the ambitious project.

Regional Commissioner Eng Robert Gabriel told a business forum at the ongoing Geita Mining and Technology Exhibition that the project will transform the area into what he called the "Silicon Valley of Tanzania."

Silicon Valley is a region in the southern part of the San Francisco Bay Area in Northern California that serves as a global centre for high technology and innovation.

"Efforts are being made to ensure that existing technologies are reproduced, modernised, and tapped professionally for the country's development," Eng Gabriel said.

He added: "I am pleased to announce that I will sign the agreement Saturday (today) to begin production of electric vehicles in the town. This is my ambition to transform the area into a technology hub in Tanzania."

Vehicles to be produced in Geita will have a battery capacity to run for 100km before being recharged, the regional head said, adding that prototypes of the two vehicles are expected to be ready within two months.

However, the Regional Commissioner could not give more details about the project but said the region has decided to use the new technology to spur its socio-economic development.

Energy minister Dr Medard Kalemani launched construction of a 96MW electricity substation which was undertaken by a Chinese firm, CAMC Engineering, worth 123 million US dollars.

Geita Urban Water Supply and Sewerage Authority (GEUWASA) Chief Executive Officer Eng Frank Changawa said his organisation has also floated a tender seeking a bidders to build a large-scale water project that will address water shortages in the area.

The new water plant will have the capacity to increase water supply from the current 10 million litres to 46 million litres a day.

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