Recent reports out of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) have the 4,800 MW Inga III hydropower dam not coming online until 2024/2025. This is three to four years later than the previous timeline had estimated.
Bruno Kapandji, the head of the Congolese agency in charge of the project, told Reuters,"We are working for this timing (in 2024 or 2025) now that the potential developer has been identified.”
Last month the government had hinted broadly that the two consortiums bidding on the project, China Three Gorges Corp. and Activadades de Construccion y Servicios out of China and Spain respectively, team up to submit a bid.
Valued at $14 billion, the project, according to Reuters, struggles to mobilize the funds required for its development. A situation which results from, among others, the World Bank withdrawing its support to the project after the country’s presidency took it over. Also, DRC’s geopolitical situation, which is marked by persistent insecurity, and president Kabila’s refusal to leave power despite his mandate having ended last December, are other reasons for the delay in constructing the dam.
The delay is not only a hit for the development of DRC, but the Inga III was set to power other countries as well. According to reports, out of the 4,800 MW which the plant will produce, 2,500 MW of it is destined for South Africa; 1,300 MW will be injected in the national mining industry and the remaining 1,000 MW will be made available to populations.