South Africa may Import Power from Mozambique and Botswana

South Africa, once a net exporter of electricity to sub-Saharan African countries, could import coal and electricity from Mozambique and Botswana to compensate for its own power shortages, Reuters and Mineweb reported.

South Africa’s state-run utility, Eskom, plans to install an additional 6,250 megawatts of power to two new South African coal-fired plants — Medupi and Kusile — according to Willem Theron, business development manager of Eskom Southern Africa transmission group.

Eskom is open to importing coal for plants it still plans to commission, Theron said at coal conference Tuesday in the Mozambique capital Maputo.

“It is assumed that some of the power can be through imports,” Theron told the conference.

Theron said one possibility for coal and electricity imports is Mozambique, where a coal boom has cooled but mines are still being developed. Mozambique has enough supplies to build coal-based power stations, Theron said.

Another possibility for electricity imports is neighboring Botswana, which geologists say has huge untapped reserves, Mineweb reported.

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