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Energy Minister Dr Medard Kalemani has announced that Tanzania has recorded its highest percentage in access to electricity so far with 84.6% in 2020.

Dr Kalemani said the number of villages with access to electricity rose to 9,112 in April 2020 from 2,018 in 2015, reports Tanzania Daily News.

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The number of customers connected to the main source of power also reached over 2.766 million, up from 1.473 million, or an increase of 1.293 million new connections.

According to the minister, power generation in the country had also increased to 1,601.84 megawatts as of last April from only 1,308MW in 2015.

The increase in power capacity is attributed to the completion of Kinyerezi I and II natural gas-powered station generating a combined capacity of 398.22MW.

Natural gas in the country’s largest source of power mix accounting to 892.72MW of the national grid.

Hydropower contributes 573.70MW, while heavy oil and biomass make up of 88.80MW and 10.50MW, respectively.

Dr Kalemani also revealed that works on the construction of the Julius Nyerere Hydropower Project (JNHPP), which will pump an additional 2,115MW into the national grid, has reached 85% and will be completed in 2022.

“We are planning to continue implementing other electricity-generating projects during the forthcoming financial year,” he said.

Energy projects underway

The lined-up projects include the ongoing Rusumo Hydropower Project – a shared project between Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi whose work has now reached 61%.

The energy minister listed other projects that will be implemented in 2020/21 as Ruhudji project (358MW), Kakono (87MW), Rumakali (222MW), Malagarasi (45MW), Kikonge (300MW), Kinyerezi I Extension (185MW), Mtwara (300MW) and renewable energy projects (solar 150 megawatts, wind 200MW and coal 600MW).

“We’re committed to increasing our power distribution networks,” he added.

He cited some projects including the 400kV Singida-Arusha- Namanga, 220kV Makambako- Songea, 220kV Bulyanhulu- Geita, 220kV Geita-Nyakanazi, 220kV Rusumo-Nyakanazi, and 400kV Iringa-Mbeya-Tunduma- Sumbawanga-Mpanda- Kigoma-Nyakanazi, which is commonly known as Northwest grid.

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