Portugal to release remaining shares in hydroelectric power station


Portuguese Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho has signed an agreement with President Armando Guebuza which will return full ownership of the hydroelectric power station at the Cahora Bassa dam on the Zambezi to Mozambique by 2014.

Currently Portugal still holds a 15% stake in the dam and Hidroeléctrica de Cahora Bassa (HCB). Mozambique has agreed to buy an additional 7.5% stake for $42 million. The remaining 7.5% will be handed over in two years’ time in a share swop whereby REN (Redes Energéticas Nacionais), which operates the Portuguese national electricity grid will take over the share options in a new ‘backbone’ electricity power transmission line.

The power generated from the plant is sold mainly to South Africa (65%) whilst large parts of Mozambique are without electricity.

The Mozambique government is planning to expand electricity generation as coal reserves, believed to be the world’s largest untapped reserves, in Moatize in the Tete Province are expanded. The government is also planning to expand its national grid in the new ‘backbone’ power transmission line which will take electricity to the south of the country.

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