Electricity Supply Corporation of Malawi (ESCOM) and Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation (ZESCO) on Wednesday this week signed a power supply agreement which will see Malawi import 20 megawatts (MW) of electricity from Zambia by the end of September, 2018.
It is largely believed that the signed power supply agreement will boost chances of foreign investors to come and invest in Malawi besides the development reducing hours of power interruption amongst the citizens.
Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining, Aggrey Masi, witnessed the signing ceremony on August 8 (2018) in Lusaka, Zambia between the two power supply institutions.
Briefing the media in Lilongwe on Thursday on his arrival from Zambia, Masi described the power supply agreement as a historical achievement.
“The signed power agreement is a landmark achievement. With these 20 megawatts, we will be greatly assisted,” he said.
Masi said the agreement is as a result of talks President Arthur Peter Mutharika held with Zambian President, Edgar Lungu on the sidelines of the recent COMESA Summit which was held in that country.
Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism, Henry Musa who accompanied Masi on the trip and whose ministry cannot thrive without adequate electricity, said in most international forums held in the country and abroad, Malawi has always asked foreign investors to come and invest in the country.
He, however, said most of these investors have not been forthcoming because of inadequate power supply.
“We cannot invest unless the problem of inadequate power supply is fixed,” said Musa, adding that the additional 20 MW Malawi will import from Zambia is part of the country’s solution to shortage of power supply.
Malawi generates 180 MW of electricity out of the 351 MW the country requires. With the 20 additional MW to be imported, Malawi will increase her capacity to 200 megawatts.
It is also expected that the development will reduce the impact of load shedding to ESCOM’s customers.
According to the Minister of Natural Resources, Energy and Mining, Malawi will import up to 100 megawatts by February, 2019, saying Zambia generates 2750 MW but only uses 2100.
On the Malawian side, Aggrey Masi and Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism, Henry Musa witnessed the signing ceremony between ZESCO and ESCOM while on the Zambian side, the country’s Energy Minister, Matthews Mkuwa witnessed the occasion.