WB to fund studies of DRC's Inga 3 BC Hydropower Development

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WB to fund studies of DRC's Inga 3 BC Hydropower Development

The World Bank's board of directors has approved a US$73.1 million technical assistance to help develop the Democratic Republic of Congo's Inga 3 hydropower project.

The project will strengthen DRC's institutional capability by establishing an autonomous and transparent Inga Development Authority, which will follow best international practice in selecting the private concessionaire and negotiating power purchase agreements.  The project will also finance technical, environmental, and social studies to develop the Inga 3 BC and selected mid-size hydropower projects sustainably.

This funding together with US$ 33.4 million which was approved by the African Development Bank late last year would provide world class skill to support DRC to develop its large hydropower potential.

H.E. Matata Ponyo Mapon, Prime Minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo, said:

"Inga 3 BC is undoubtedly the most transformative project for Africa in the 21st century. It is one of the strategic pillars of development for the DRC, that needs energy to expand growth and reduce poverty in a sustainable way, saidThe World Bank Group's involvement in this project reinforces its mission to fight poverty, and its ongoing commitment to help the Congolese government in its goal to move the country along the path to a strong development future."

The Inga 3 Basse Chute project near Matadi would divert Congo River waters into a 12-kilometer channel and then pass them through a 100-meter  high hydropower dam on the Bundi Valley which will create a 15.5 kmreservoir.

Inga 3 is expected to generate 4,800 megawatts of power. It is the world's largest hydropower site. With an estimated generation cost of US$ 0.03/kWh, it also is one of the most affordable sources of energy in Africa. It is proposed that 1,300 MW of power would be sold to mining companies in DRC's Katanga Province and an additional 2,500 MW would be sold to South Africa.

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