In South Africa last week, Russian Atomic Energy Corporation Rosatom showcased its thermal power capabilities, ‘Modern Russian Technologies for Thermal Power Engineering in Africa’ in Cape Town.
Rosatom’s power engineering division presented its capabilities in the manufacture of complex boiler island equipment in addition to building automated control systems for thermal, hydropower and geothermal power plants.
Russian export insurance agency EXIAR highlighted the potential development of cooperation between South Africa and Russia. To date the company has concluded two deals in Africa worth over $100 million (ZAR1 billion), Rosatom said in a statement.
Abundant resources, not enough investment
Knox Msebenzi, Executive Director of The Power Institute for East and Southern Africa (PIESA) addressed delegates at the conference on the current challenges facing the African power sector: “Africa has been blessed with so much energy and yet we have very little power, electricity penetration is currently only at 20% in Sub-Saharan Africa.”
According to Rosatom, 25 of the 54 nations in Africa are currently suffering an energy crisis. It is estimated that only a quarter of sub-Saharan Africa’s population have access to electricity, which according to Msebenzi “means that 600 million people are living with limited or no access to a reliable supply of electricity.”
Rosatom expands investment into S.African nuclear
Earlier this month the South African Department of Energy (DoE) and Rosatom signed two Memoranda of Understanding at the 7th BRICS summit in Ufa, Russia.
The DoE said that the documents are for the Memorandum on cooperation in training personnel for the South African nuclear energy sector, and the Memorandum on cooperation in Enhancement of Public Awareness of Nuclear Energy in South Africa.
The memoranda signify cooperation between the two countries aimed at building a strong relationship between Russia and South Africa in the field of nuclear energy.