TANZANIA: IN a significant development, economic stakeholders have expressed optimism about the Julius Nyerere Hydroelectric Power Plant (JNHPP)’s commencing operation, emphasising its potential to stimulate industrial growth and promote trade.
The positive sentiments were shared following an official visit by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Energy, Dr Doto Biteko, who announced that the iconic electricity project has reached an impressive 94.78 per cent completion.
Dr Biteko further assured that the operation of JNHPP is slated to commence next year.
Local manufacturer, Akberalis Hardware and Electric Limited hailed the government for effectively supervising strategic projects.
Mr Akberalis Jozer, the company’s Director and Founder, expressed gratitude and predicted that the commencement of JNHPP’s operations would eliminate electricity rationing in the country.
Akberalis Hardware and Electric Limited, based in Dar es Salaam and specialising in the production of aluminium ladders and Polypropylene (PP) ropes, foresees significant benefits from the JNHPP.
Mr Jozer highlighted the plant’s substantial capacity of generating 2,115 Megawatts (Mw) as a game-changer for both domestic and industrial power needs.
He stressed that a consistent power supply would enable manufacturers to increase production, subsequently creating job opportunities and contributing to the nation’s revenue.
“It is much easier to plan the expansion of industries if there is sufficient electricity to run the machines,” remarked Mr Jozer.
Concerns were also raised regarding the need for Tanzania Electric Supply Company (TANESCO) to fortify electricity transmission infrastructures, particularly at industrial sites, to prevent avoidable power cuts that could impede production.
Mr Medard Wilfred, a Business and Marketing Expert based at the Saint Augustine University of Tanzania (SAUT), praised the government’s commitment to expediting the completion of the JNHPP.
Stressing the critical role of electricity in all development sectors, he anticipated that sufficient power generation would spur the growth of small, medium and large industries, leading to a surge in job creation and technological advancement.
“In any country, electricity is the engine of all development sectors,” affirmed Mr Wilfred, adding that Tanzania is poised for industrialisation and a technology-driven economy with an abundance of electricity.
He further emphasised that sufficient electricity supply would complement other economic infrastructures, such as the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), airports, roads and ports, facilitating business growth and the transfer of technology.
Mr Wilfred commended the government for aligning with the ruling CCM Party’s 2020/2025 Election Manifesto.
The manifesto strongly emphasises constructing favourable infrastructure, including electricity, for the citizens’ well-being and national development. As the JNHPP nears completion, Tanzania stands on the brink of a transformative era, fuelled by a reliable and abundant power supply.
With three months remaining to implement President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s order to reduce the country’s electricity challenges, Dr Biteko said that the two machines offer hope that the order will be carried out. The machines will generate 470 megawatts and be integrated into the national grid to increase the amount of electricity.
He clarified that the first dry test will be finished when machine number nine arrives next month, and the second test, or wet testing, will be finished and ready to start producing electricity for machine number eight by February 19, 2024. It is anticipated that the tests will be finished in February 2024.
About water filling, he stated that the power-generating dam has 166.65 cubic metres of water above sea level, which is enough to begin producing energy as 163 cubic metres of water can produce electricity.
In a further move, Dr Biteko acknowledged that there is a problem with power and that the public has a right to know about the steps the government is taking to address it. As a result, obtaining dependable energy is now the top priority.