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2 Independent Power Producers to feed 41 Megawatts into grid

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Ministry of Energy has said it expects two Independent Power Producers (IPPs), JMC Power Limited and Phanes, to start supplying solar power to the national grid by May.

The two firms would be feeding a combined 41 Megawatts (mw) into the grid, which will help ease electricity supply woes the country has been facing.

In January, the country was hit by numerous tropical storms that wreaked havoc on electricity generation and transmission systems, which resulted in intermittent power supply.

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It also comes at a time the government has decided not to renew a contract with Aggreko, which comes to an end this month. The diesel-run generators were generating about 78mw.

Ministry of Energy spokesperson Upile Kamoto said, in the short term, there will be an addition of 41mw by the end of May from solar power plants.

“We expect 20mw by JMC solar farm in Salima by the end of March and 21mw by Phanes Group by the end of May 2022. Further, there will be addition of a total of 44.9mw by the Electricity Generation Company (Egenco) after repairs to one generator at Wovwe and diesel gensets are completed.

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“Therefore, there will be an additional 85.5mw to the grid in the short term to counter the removal of 78mw from Aggreko,” Kamoto said.

Kamoto further said the country is making progress on buying electricity from neighboring countries.

“On the Malawi- Mozambique interconnection project, construction of the power line between Malawi and Mozambique is underway, including associated structures. The Commercial Operating Date (COD) of the interconnector is expected in November 2023.

“Currently Malawi is getting 5mw from Zambia Cross-Border connection through Mchinji. The power is limited to 5mw due to power line capacity limitations,” she said.

In an earlier interview, Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry Director for Business Environment and Policy Advocacy Madalitso Kazembe said energy continues to be a chronic challenge to doing business in Malawi.

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