On October 4, the Ministry of Energy and Hydraulic Resources of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and China-DRC Hydropower Company under China Railway Resources Group signed Transmission Franchise Contract of Busanga Hydropower Station in Kinshasa. This is the first power transmission franchise contract signed by the DRC government since the promulgation and implementation of its Electricity Law in 2014, which serves as a leading example for demonstrative purpose.
According to provisions in the contract, the DRC government grants the exclusive franchise of the transmission line for Busanga Hydropower Station to China-DRC Hydropower Company, including the rights to design, build, hold, manage, operate and maintain the project, the right to enter relevant public areas, the right to enter DRC’s electrical grid and all the rights to complete the project, such as the privilege in public power services and administrative services. The franchise period designated in the contract is 30 years.
Busanga Hydropower Station is an important part of the “package” of mutually beneficial cooperation projects between China and DRC. The station has a reservoir water storage capacity of 1.3 billion cubic meters and a total installed capacity of 240 megawatts. The dam of the power station is a roller-compacted concrete hyperbolic arch dam with a height of 141.5 meters, ranking among the top of the world. It is the largest infrastructure project under construction in DRC at present, promising to be the flagship project for the country to realize its national development expectations. After all four units of the station are put into operation, its annual average power generation is estimated to reach 1.32 billion kWh, accounting for around one tenth of DRC’s power nationwide.
The completion and operation of Busanga Hydropower Station will not only supplement the power shortage in DRC, promote local industrial, economic and social development, and improve the mine production and metal deep processing capacities of the country, but will also put part of the electricity into civilian use for further easing the tight power supply faced with local residents and thus improving their living standards.
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