11 October – Frank Sebbowa, Uganda’s Electricity Regulatory Authority chief executive officer, has confirmed that negotiations for the construction of the proposed 200MW Karuma hydropower project have started.
A memorandum of understanding between the Government and Norwegian power firm, Norpak was being drawn up.
"Both parties are engaged in negotiations for the agreement terms. Each party has to agree on sharing its obligations of the project," he said.
"The Memorandum of Understanding is the first document which will take a few weeks before other project legal documents are pursued."
The $450 million project will take three years to complete, with construction expected to begin early next year. The power plant complex will cost $355m with transmission lines, the sub-station and resettlement plan costing $95m.
This project, the second biggest after the 250MW Bujagali dam will ensure stable and reliable hydro power generation in the medium term.
With the completion of the Karuma and Bujagali projects, load shedding will be contained and hydropower will dominated the energy mix. Work on the Bujagali project is already two months ahead of schedule.
"We are not going to follow load shedding from the back but from the front. This energy crisis should be the last to happen," Daudi Migereko, the energy minister, said.
In 20 years time, Uganda’s energy requirements will reach 11 000MW.