Hydro-power in the
Congo Republic “’
now a new project
at Sounda Gorge
 
Brazzaville, Congo — ESI-AFRICA.COM — 10 May 2011 – South Africa’s Industrial Development Group (IDG) has announced that it is studying the possibility of financing for a 1,200MW hydro-electric dam that it is considering constructing in Congo Republic.

Reuters reports that should the Sounda project go ahead, it would make energy-deficient Congo a regional power exporter, though previous efforts to build the dam, dating back decades, have been derailed by political instability.

“Technically, we are ready,” IDG chief executive Mxolisi Mbetse told reporters here after a meeting with Congolese government energy officials. “I will now leave things to our finance department, and by June or July you will see lots of activity here in Congo.”

Sources at Congo’s energy ministry said the government had supported the IDG’s interest, and that no other companies had been seeking to build the dam, on the Sounda Gorge, some 140km north of Point Noire.

The project has been on the books since Congo’s first president, Fulbert Youlou, was in power in the 1960s, but has been repeatedly derailed since by a series of coups and a civil war.

Congo generates only enough electricity to supply about 45% of demand in urban areas, and 5% in rural areas.

IDG is a black-owned diversified industrial group focused on identifying and developing greenfield energy and mining projects in Africa, according to its Web site.