South Africa picks 25 preferred bidders for renewable power tender

PUBLISHED: Fri, 29 Oct 2021 09:36:01 GMT
Olivia Kumwenda-Mtambo
Pic: Waldo Swiegers

JOHANNESBURG, Oct 28 (Reuters) – South Africa’s government has selected 25 preferred bidders in its latest effort to beef up renewable electricity supply as the country grapples with power shortages, Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe said on Thursday.

The tender for 2,600 megawatts (MW) was launched in April to find the quickest options to ease a power shortage that has cost Africa’s most industrialised economy billions of dollars.

“The outcome of the evaluation process…has resulted in the selection of the 25 preferred bidder projects, procuring a total of 2,583 MW,” Mantashe told a media briefing.

Read more: UK climate envoy to visit South Africa to discuss helping shift from coal

Mantashe said a request for proposals for the procurement of 2,600 MW under the next bid round for private power producers will go to the market by the end of January 2022.

State power utility Eskom regularly implements power outages because of faults at its ailing coal fleet, holding back economic growth in South Africa.

On Monday, Eskom said South Africa needed an extra 4,000 to 6,000 MW of generation capacity to eliminate the risk of scheduled power cuts.

(Reporting by Olivia Kumwenda-Mtambo; Editing by Susan Fenton)

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