Botswana to fully satisfy its electricity demand by 2026

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GABORONE, Oct. 31 (Xinhua) -- Botswana is planning to fully satisfy its demand for electricity by 2026, the southern African country's energy minister said Saturday.

Plans are already underway for the construction of four new solar and thermal power plants in the next six years, which will see Botswana producing an approximately combined electricity capacity of 610 MW, said Lefoko Moagi, the country's minister of mineral resources, green technology and energy security.

"The development will enable Botswana to fully satisfy its demand for electricity by 2026 while at the same time diversifying its sources for production," Moagi told journalists after touring the closed Tati Nickel Mining Company located on the outskirts of Francistown, Botswana's second largest city.

Currently, the country has a national power demand of 600 MW. However, the southern African country is forced to import electricity from its neighboring countries due to incessant breakdowns at one of its main power stations, Morupule B Power Plant, situated in central Botswana.

Tenders will be floated at the beginning of next year for the construction of a 200 MW solar power plant, which would be completed by 2026, he said, adding that a further construction of a 10 MW coal-fired power station will be launched during the same year and will be completed in 2025.

In August this year, the Botswana government approved a 20-year energy resource plan, under which procurement is also underway for a 100 MW solar photovoltaic plant that will come online in 2022 and a 300 MW coal plant expected to be operational by 2026, he said. Enditem

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