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25 Jul 2015 13:05
The Southern African Development Community (SADC), which groups 15 countries with 277-million people, said there are enough power
generation projects underway to end electricity shortages by 2019.
Projects beginning in the next three to four years
will bring the amount of capacity under construction in sub-Saharan Africa to 24 000 megawatts, or three times the
current power shortfall, Remmy Makumbe, SADC’s director of infrastructure, told
reporters Friday in Johannesburg.
“The region is facing a power shortage,” Makumbe
said. “Given the projects that are on the go, we expect that we will be able to
bridge that particular gap by 2018-2019.”
About 600-million people, or 70% of sub-Saharan
Africa’s population, lack access to electricity, according to US Aid, a
government-backed development agency.
The power deficit and poor reliability of supply
reduce annual economic growth by 2.1 percentage points on average, the World
SADC members have completed building almost 2 000
megawatts of generation since 2014, the organisation said Friday in a
It will finish a further 2 763 megawatts in 2015.
The power deficit in the region is 8 247 megawatts, it said.
excluding South Africa, produces
about 28 000 megawatts of electricity, the same as Argentina, according to the
Consumers pay more for power, with average tariffs
at $0.13 a kilowatt-hour.
That compares with $0.04 to $0.08 on average in most
parts of the developing world, according to the bank.
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