Botswana's state-owned power utility has invited bids to build a 100 megawatt (MW) solar power plant to boost energy security in the diamond-rich southern African country.
In a document published on its website, Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) said it expects energy demand to more than double to 1,359 MW by 2035 from around 600 MW. "BPC would therefore like to engage companies into a joint venture for the development, implementation and operation of a 100 MW solar power plant with suitable storage capacity," it said.
The development is expected to start two years from the appointment of a preferred partner. Botswana is facing power supply deficit and relies on electricity imports from South Africa and Mozambique, though the 300 MW expansion of its coal-fired Morupule B power plant could pave the way to self-sufficiency in electricity generation.
However, the expansion of Morupule B, which currently generates about 260 MW, has been stalled by a dispute over an $800 million guarantee between the contractors and government.