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Namibian and Zambian officials on Thursday inked an agreement to facilitate a private sector-led infrastructure development project.
The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which was signed in Swakopmund by the Minister of Mines and Energy, Tom Alweendo, and Zambia’s Minister of Energy, Peter Kapala aim to build an oil and gas pipeline from the port of Walvis Bay to Zambia.
“If executed as planned, this project has the potential to unblock economic potential, not only for Namibia and Zambia; but for the SADC region as a whole. This project will be a great example of regional cooperation as envisaged by the SADC Regional Indicative Strategic Development Plan,” said Alweendo in a statement.
This plan calls for more collaboration and less competition among the member countries. As a region, we need to go far, he added.
“As we all know one of the biggest challenges we have on the African continent is access to energy, where more than 600 million Africans do not have access to energy. What we have on the continent is energy poverty. One of the contributing factors to the energy poverty we are all experiencing is the lack of energy transport infrastructure,” he noted.
According to Alweendo, gas will become the most important source of energy on the continent, and therefore having a gas pipeline to transport the gas more efficiently will be critical.
“It is one thing to sign an MoU and it is another thing to ensure that it is implemented. The MoU makes provision for a joint technical committee that will be responsible to work with the private sector in identifying the exact assistance that will be needed. We urge those who will be serving on the technical committee to work diligently and to make it happen,” he said.
Speaking at the inking event, Zambia’s Minister of Energy, Peter Chibwe Kapala said the Inter-Governmental MoU sets the intention of the two governments to support and facilitate the implementation of the private sector-led Namibia- Zambia Multi–Product Petroleum and Natural Gas Pipelines Project (NAZOP).
“The NAZOP Pipelines system, when completed, is envisioned to supply 100,000 to 120,000 barrels per day of refined petroleum products in Namibia and Zambia. The NAZOP pipelines systems are also targeting supplying other countries in the SADC Region,” he said, adding that in developing the project to take it to bankability, the promoters will be conducting technical and economic feasibility studies.
The MoU was inked on the back of the 10th session of the Namibia-Zambia joint permanent commission of cooperation, which concluded on Thursday.
Article source: https://economist.com.na/74100/headlines/namibia-zambia-cement-intent-to-develop-oil-and-gas-pipeline-pipeline-envisioned-to-supply-100000-to-120000-barrels-per-day/