Botswana investing $46m to offset power deficit
Botswana Power Corporation (BPC) Chief Executive Officer, Dr Stefan Schwarzfischer said Monday that his utility would invest $46 million in what is known as the north-west transmission grid connection project to offset shortages and reliance on other member states from the region.
The project entails the extension of the high-voltage electricity network to the north-western and part of the country to cater for new power capacity requirements and connect areas that are supplied through cross-border power lines to the national grid.
Schwarzfischer said the project is expected to create 8 000 permanent jobs for citizens from next year.
Describing the project as one of the biggest infrastructure programmes by the government, he said it would be implemented in two phases, creating 2,100 jobs in each phase during the period of construction, with about 81 percent being for local citizens.
“About 5000 to 8000 permanent jobs will be created in various parts of the economy once the project has been completed and business operations grown and established in the North Western Districts of the economy,” he said.
Schwarzfischer added that this is intended to reduce imports of electricity from Namibia, Zimbabwe and Zambia, emphasizing that excess power will be exported to the SADC region.