Ruzizi III hydropower plant project is moving forward following the invitation of contractors by Ruzizi III Energy Limited, the developer of the project, to submit expressions of interest for an Engineer-Procure-Construct (EPC) tender.
The EPC contract will include the engineering, procurement, construction, testing, and commissioning of a 45m height embankment dam with associated spillway, low-level outlet, and eco-flow powerhouse, a 3.8km long, 6 to 7m diameter, concrete-lined headrace tunnel from the dam reservoir to the powerhouse, penstock and unit penstocks, power station and a switchyard.
Other works concern an 8.3km long 220 kV double-circuit transmission line connecting the Ruzizi III substation to the regional dispatch station in Kamanyola (DRC), access roads from Bugarama (Rwanda) and Kamanyola (DRC) to the dam site, and all other ancillary and related works.
Development of the project
The Ruzizi III hydropower project is being developed on the Ruzizi River, which provides the link between Lake Kivu and Lake Tanganyika, under a Public-Private Partnership (PPP). The private sector project sponsors are Industrial Promotion Services of Kenya and SN Power of Norway while the Public parties are the Governments of the Republics of Burundi and Rwanda as well as the Democratic Republic of Congo.
The project has an intended installed capacity of about 149MW expandable to 200 MW, subject to final definition studies. The power generated will be distributed to the three countries via existing distribution networks, connected to Ruzizi I and Ruzizi II.
Funding for the project
As of December 2015, the cost of the construction of the Ruzizi III hydropower plant was calculated at US$625.19 million, US$ 138.88 million of which will be borne by the African Development Bank (AfDB)’s public sector window and US$ 50.22 million by the private sector window.
Other funders include the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the Kreditanstalt für Wiederaufbau (KfW), the German development agency.