$900 Million has been Ratified by the AfDB Group and the World Bank for a Multinational Power Transmission line between Mauritania and Mali…to connect 620,000 people to Electricity
By Abdul Rahman Bangura-
NEW AFRICA BUSINESS NEWS (NABN) Freetown, Sierra Leone–The Bank, in a statement on its website, made the commitment with the partners at a roundtable in the Mauritania capital – Nouakchott on the AfDB’s website with its partners.
It was believed the dialogue examined allotment alternatives for the project, which similarly involved developing solar power stations.
“AfDB has worked closely with both countries to prepare the project and affirmed its interest in co-funding.
“The project aligns with the Bank’s Desert-to-Power initiative, which is set to become the world’s largest area of solar power generation.
“The initiative will increase solar production capacity by 100M. It will also strengthen and extend distribution networks covering nearly 1,500 km of high-voltage (225 kV) lines” the statement revealed.
Mauritania’s Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development – Abdessalam Saleh, told the strategic nature of the project would have a big transformative impact on the economy.
Saleh said, it would furthermore establish an alliance to the Senegal River Basin Development Organization’s grid.
“The project constitutes an essential link in the regional electricity distribution system known as the “trans-Sahel spine,” which is currently being surveyed.
“ It will link Mauritania to Chad, passing through three other landlocked countries; Burkina Faso, Niger and Mali.
The 225 kV line will connect new renewable energy parks to the sub-region’s power grid, Saleh added.
The AfDB’s Deputy Director-General for North Africa, Malinne Blomberg, said the project would turn AfDB’s policy of aiding the development of green infrastructure in Africa into a reality. Bloomberg, which is moreover Country Manager for Mauritania, said it would also facilitate green, inclusive, sustainable growth, which would considerably enhance the living conditions of people in Africa.
She said: “We firmly believe that this project will have a transformative effect on promoting both the private sector and trade and, consequently, create job opportunities.”
Daniel Schroth – AfDB’s Director for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency, said this regional project was a flagship for the sub-region’s energy transition. He touted the near partnership between Mauritania and Mali, as well as technical and financial partners in preparing the project.
AfDB has operated in Mauritania for over 50 years in various strategic development areas. These include: agriculture, government, water and sanitation, mining, private sector, transport, and social issues, with, an active portfolio of more than 140 million dollars.
The Bank Group is also active in several economic sectors in Mali, namely transport, agriculture, energy, water and sanitation, finance, governance, and climate change. AfDB’s established portfolio in the nation amounts to about 723 million dollars.
For New Africa Business News (NABN) Abdul Rahman Bangura Reports, Africa Correspondent