HomeRegional NewsCentral AfricaGabon explores transition to gas as base power

Gabon explores transition to gas as base power

Technology group Wärtsilä will develop, supply, construct, operate and maintain a 120MW gas power plant with the Gabon Power Company, a subsidiary of the Sovereign Fund of the Gabonese Republic dedicated to energy and water.

Wärtsilä signed a Concession Agreement with the Government of Gabon on 22 September. It will jointly lead the project development with the Gabon Power Company (GPC). The technology group will build the plant under a full EPC contract and then operate and maintain it under a 15-year O&M agreement.

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The plant will be located at the industrial site of Owendo, close to the country capital, Libreville. Once commissioned it will supply electricity to Gabon utility Société d’Energie et d’Eau du Gabon (SEEG). The gas power plant project represents one of the largest of its kind in sub-Sahara Africa, and a sizeable energy infrastructure project of Gabon.

Marcellin Massila Akendengue, GPC general manager said the country is experiencing a deficit between supply capability and demand for electricity, which is increasing year on year.

“This project will play an important role in bridging this deficit, and some 600,000 people will ultimately benefit from a more sustainable and economical electricity supply delivered to SEEG. The plant will replace rented generation assets by SEEG and bring significant benefits, in line with Gabon sustainability ambitions,” the general manager explained.

The project is being developed under a Public-Private Partnership framework, with the asset to transfer to the Gabonese authorities at the end of the concession agreement.

It has the full support of the government of Gabon, with the Council of Ministers’ approval received in May 2021, and the Concession Agreement having received approvals by the country’s President, Prime Minister and the relevant ministries.

Wärtsilä’s installed base in West Africa comprises 440 plants with 946 engines producing 4,928MW in 34 countries. In Gabon, Wärtsilä has a long-term presence from projects delivered and contracted with SEEG and private energy-intensive companies.

The role of LNG in Africa’s energy value chain will be explored at Enlit Africa’s digital event between 26 and 28 October. Register now for your front row seat to To LNG or not: is that the question?

Theresa Smith
Theresa Smith is a Content Specialist for ESI Africa.

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