14 September 2012 – Tanzania’s Citizen newspaper reports that a multi-million dollar project to connect Tanzania to the Southern African Power Pool (SAPP) will be realised in 2015.
Tanzania’s minister for energy and minerals, Sospeter Muhongo says, "We seriously believe in the integration of regional power networks and intra-regional cooperation as we recognise it will provide rewards."
Once the Zambia-Tanzania-Kenya transmission inter-connector project becomes operational in 2015, Tanzania will become an operating member of the SAPP as Zambia is already connected to this trading power pool.
The minister says that the move would convince other non-operating members of SAPP, like Angola and Malawi, to join the power pool. Besides the SAPP, Tanzania is also keen to be connected to the East African Power Pool and the Nile Basin Initiative.
The acting managing director of the Tanzania Electricity Supply Company (Tanesco), Declan Mhaiki, says that a 400kV transmission line from Iringa to Shinyanga through Dodoma and Singida would be completed in 2015.
The backbone transmission investment project will reinforce the central transmission corridor giving room to further interconnection developments to Arusha and Nairobi as well as for the 400kV Iringa-Mbeya section, which is part of the interconnection to Zambia.
According to him, Tanesco’s installed capacity has reached 1,380MW against the peak demand of about 835MW. This means that there are no more power threats of power rationing in the near future.
The government and the power utility took measures to deal with an electricity crisis last year by enlisting the support of both emergency and rental power producers. It therefore filled the power generation gap of about 500MW.
Energy demand in the southern African bloc increases at about three per cent a year.